IRS Data Retrieval

Using the IRS Data Retrieval link while filing the FAFSA can greatly reduce your chances of being selected for an audit process called verification.  If you are selected for verification, this is the preferred method for providing tax documentation.


  • It will be helpful to have a copy of your tax return available when you use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool in your FAFSA.
  • The IRS Data Retrieval software is case-sensitive and abbreviation-sensitive
  • Your name will auto-populate on the IRS Data Retrieval form.
    • If your middle initial is on your tax return, you will have to add it to the IRS Data Retrieval form.
    • If your tax return information was typed in ALL CAPS, make sure the information on the IRS Data Retrieval form is also in ALL CAPS; If your tax return is in sentence case, make sure the IRS Data Retrieval form is also in sentence case.
    • Do not include punctuation such as periods on the IRS Data Retrieval Form.
    • Carefully enter address information as it appears on your tax return, excluding punctuation.
    • If you have moved since your tax return was filed, even if you have reported the address change to the IRS, you should enter the address that was listed on your original return.
    • IRS Data Retrieval Video
    • Please note that the Financial Aid Office receives FAFSA updates once per week. It may take up to 10 days for FAFSA to process your information and for our office to receive the update. 

In some limited circumstances, taxpayers are not presented with the option to link the FAFSA to the IRS. For example, if the taxpayer's current marital status is  "divorced or separated" and the tax filing status was "married filing joint"; IRS Data Retrieval will not be an option.

If you are are unable to complete IRS Data Retrieval, you will need to request a Tax Return Transcript from the IRS. Please click here and follow the instructions for requesting a Tax Return Transcript.