Conflicting Information Policy

In order to ensure the integrity of all financial aid applicant data received at Orange Coast College, the Financial Aid Office must resolve any conflicting information in a student’s file. Any office at OCC may hold information or documentation that could create a conflict. The Financial Aid Office will work with all sources to collect documentation for purposes of clarification and accuracy. 

Common sources of conflicting information can be, but are not limited to: 

  • FAFSA data  
  • ISIR comments and rejects  
  • Documents for verification  
  • Documents for C-flag resolution  
  • Tax returns or tax return transcripts 
  • Information from different school offices  
  • Enrollment Center, Registrar, and Records  
  • Housing Office 
  • Bursar or Fiscal Department  
  • Correspondence from students and parents  
  • Verbal statements made by students and/or parents 
  • Other financial aid applications: institutional applications  
  • State and federal agencies  
  • Outside scholarship organizations and donors  
  • Information from other schools  
  • Tips from outside sources National Student Loan Data System 

In addition to reviewing the FAFSA application and data match information provided by the Central Processing System (CPS), a school must have an adequate system to identify conflicting information regardless of the source and regardless of whether the student is selected for verification. The school is responsible for reconciling any conflicting information that it has.  

All such discrepancies must be resolved before any Federal Student Aid (FSA) funds are disbursed to the student.  If a discrepancy is discovered after disbursing FSA funds, the information must still be reconciled, and appropriate action must be taken.  

Discrepant Data with Enrollment Services 

Individuals who have completed high school, college, or university coursework must obtain a complete evaluation of transcripts, degrees, and other relevant documents, even if the coursework has been accepted by another college or university. The Financial Aid Office may discover coursework completed at another institution and require an official transcript to be submitted to Enrollment Services for evaluation. 

Other discrepant data which can occur, but is not limited to: 

High School Diploma/GED:   

  • If a student did not state on their FAFSA application completion of HS/GED, the student must submit a copy of their High School diploma 

Discrepant Tax Data 

Financial aid administrators are required to know whether a person is required to file a tax return, the correct filing status, and that an individual cannot be claimed as an exemption by more than one person. If an individual is required to file taxes and did not file, he or she will be required to complete the appropriate tax form and submit a tax transcript or utilize the IRS Data Retrieval Tool on the FAFSA before the processing of the financial aid application can be completed.  

If it is discovered that a student and/or spouse, or a dependent student’s married parents have each filed as “head of household” or claimed a spouse as a dependent, the individuals will be required to amend the tax return and file under the correct filing status. It is not acceptable to simply add the two tax returns together.  A copy of the IRS tax return transcript will be required before the financial aid application can be completed.  

Publication 17 of the IRS Your Federal Income Tax is an excellent resource. 

 IRS Flag 07 

Potential conflict in data transferred by the student and/or the parent from the IRS.  To ensure that correct information is used to determine the applicant’s Title IV eligibility when IRS Flag 07 appears on an ISIR, the file will be selected for verification. An Income Verification form will be requested along with a copy of the amended tax return and IRS tax transcript.  

400 and 401 Comment Code 

Potential conflict in data transferred by the student and/or the parent from the IRS.  To ensure that correct information is used to determine the applicant’s Title IV eligibility when Comment Code 400 or 401 appears on an ISIR, the file will be selected for verification. 

Cal Grant Eligibility 

It is necessary to verify financial eligibility for all Cal Grant recipients who have been selected for verification or who have an ISIR/Cal ISIR loaded into our system with a transaction number of 2 or greater.  The purpose of this review is to ensure that changes to a student’s application do not result in the student’s information exceeding the Cal Grant income and asset ceiling. 

Referral of Fraud Cases  

According to federal regulations, if the Financial Aid Office suspects that a student or parent has misreported information or altered documentation to fraudulently obtain federal funds, we are obligated to report that suspicion and provide evidence to the U.S. Office of Inspector General. If you purposely give false or misleading information, you may be fined up to $20,000, sent to prison, or both.,2,3,25,4,5,16,6,7,17,8,9,10,21,11,18,75,74,12,76,13,19,14,26,15,20,27
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