In recent updates to the U.S. Department of Education (ED) Program Integrity Q&A website, ED made mid-year changes to the verification documentation requirements for IRS victims of identity theft and amended tax return filers. These changes became effective for verifications completed on or after July 7, 2015, for the 2015–16 award year, and carry forward to the 2016–17 award year.
Victims of IRS Identity Theft
In addition to collecting a copy of the Tax Return DataBase View (TRDBV) transcript, the school must also collect a statement signed and dated by the tax filer indicating that he or she was a victim of IRS tax-related identity theft and that the IRS has been made aware of the tax-related identity theft. Schools that completed 2015–16 verification prior to July 7, 2015, based on the guidance in GEN-14-05 are not required to reverify those individuals by now collecting the signed statement. However, schools completing verification on or after July 7, 2015 must collect both the TRDBV and signed statement from the tax filer.
Amended Tax Returns
When the school is aware that in individual has filed an amended tax return, the school will also need to collect a copy of the IRS Tax Return Transcript (which does not have to be signed), or the alternative documentation specified under DOC-Q10/DOC-A10 on the ED Program Integrity Q&A website, in order to complete verification. For any verifications completed on or after July 7, 2015, the school must collect all of the following for individuals who filed an amended tax return:
Here again, the school is not required to reverify those students for whom verification was completed prior to July 7, 2015.
Publication Date: 7/15/2015