The IRS Data Retrieval Tool is available to retrieve data directly from a filed 2016 tax return for use on your 2018-19 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). If you and/or parents use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA and do not change any of the data elements retrieved, you will not be required to submit tax return transcripts for yourself and/or your parents or spouse in the event you are selected for verification. Tax data will be available for retrieval on the FAFSA within:
- 1-2 weeks if you filed your taxes electronically
- 6-8 weeks if you filed your taxes with a paper tax return by mail
Follow the instructions below to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on your FAFSA. The instructions will start with the assumption that you are not already logged in to your FAFSA.
- Login to the FAFSA website using your FSA ID.
- If you do not have an FSA ID select "Create an FSA ID" and go through the process to create one.
- If you have forgotten your FSA ID, select "Create an FSA ID" and select the Edit My FSA ID tab and click "Forgot My Username" or "Forgot My Password".
- If you have already submitted your FAFSA, select Make FAFSA Corrections.
- Create a "Save Key"
- Verify your previously entered demographic information and make updates as needed.
- Go to the Financial Information tab
- Make sure that the status of the tax return is marked "Already Completed". If marked "Will File" or "Not Going to File" you cannot use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
- Complete the series of questions provided to determine if you can use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool.
- If eligible, click the "Link to IRS" to be transferred to the IRS database.
- A message indicating you are leaving FAFSA on the web will pop up, select OK
- Enter the required filling status and address information exactly as it was filed with the IRS and click Submit.
- Review the tax information displayed, check the "Transfer my Tax Information to the FAFSA" box.
- Click the Transfer Now button. You will be redirected back to the FAFSA.
- Note: Everything transferred over from the IRS will say "Transferred from the IRS," be sure not to change any of this information.
- If you are dependent for FAFSA purposes, review the income earned from work questions for your parents using their W-2(s) for accuracy. This information is not transferred from the IRS.
- After retrieving tax information, continue to the "Sign and Submit" section and follow instructions to submit your corrections.
Note: If you are a dependent student and required to provide parental information, you may also use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool for your parents. Navigate to the Parent Financial Information tab and repeat steps 6 through 14.
Students and/or Parents who are ineligible to use the IRS Data Retrieval Tool (or choose not to use the tool) and whose FAFSA is selected for verification must submit the IRS Tax Return Transcript to the Financial Aid Office.
IRS Data Retrieval Tool Unavailable for the 2017-18 FAFSA
In March of 2017, the U.S. Department of Education and the Internal Revenue Service suspended the use of the IRS Data Retrieval Tool for the 2017-18 FAFSA, commonly used by students and parents to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) to automatically populate FAFSA fields with your federal tax information.
Because the tool remains unavailable for completing the 2017-18 FAFSA, Madison College is recommending that you do the following to assist you in the filing process:
- Don’t delay completing your FAFSA.
- Use your 2015 tax returns to complete the 2017-18 FAFSA.
- If selected for verification, you will be asked to provide a 2015 Tax Return Transcript. We recommend requesting the document immediately after completing the FAFSA, as it can take 5-10 days to arrive by mail. For instructions on how to obtain one, review the information in the Tax Return Transcript section of this page.
If you have questions on how to complete your FAFSA or need assistance, register for a FAFSA Workshop or contact the Financial Aid Office, we are here to help.