Using the FAFSA IRS Data Retrieval Tool (DRT)
IRS data is available within one to two weeks of electronically filing your taxes or within six to eight weeks after filing a paper tax return. You MUST have already completed your income tax return to use the DRT.
Who can use it?
You CAN use the IRS Data Retrieval System if you:
- Have a valid SSN
- Have filed a federal tax return for the most recent applicable year
- Have NOT changed marital status since Dec. 31 of the preceding year
Who CANNOT use the IRS Data Retrieval tool for 2012-2013:
- Parents with all zeroes for a SSN
- Any student or parent with a marital status date of Jan. 1 of the current year or later
- Any student or parent who indicated on the FAFSA they have not already filed a tax return or will not file a tax return
- A student (and spouse if applicable) or parent who filed as Married Filing Separately on tax returns. You CAN do the data retrieval for one (parent/student) and not the other (parent/student).
- An applicant, parent or spouse, as applicable, who has filed an amended tax return
How the IRS DRT Works:
- Log in to the FAFSA.
- On the Financial Information tab, in the first drop-down box, select “Already completed,” and you will be presented with a series of questions that determine your eligibility to use the IRS DRT.
- If you select “None of the above,” you will be presented the option to use the IRS DRT.
- Enter your PIN and click “Link To IRS.” (You will not be asked to enter your PIN if you entered a PIN to begin your FAFSA.)
- Your FAFSA will be saved, and you will be transferred to the IRS website.
- On the IRS website, enter the requested information. Make sure you enter info EXACTLY as it would be on your tax return (example: if you filed as 2nd street, don’t enter in Second Street).
- Once the IRS has validated your identification, your IRS tax information will display. You can either transfer your information from the IRS website, or choose to return to FAFSA on the web from the IRS website. If you do not transfer your information, or choose not to return from the IRS website, you will have to log in to open your saved FAFSA.
- If you transfer your IRS tax information, questions that are populated with tax information will be marked with “Transferred from the IRS.”