What We Need and Why We Need It

Domestic/U.S. citizen students

Below is a list of some income documentation ("tax forms") that you will use to complete the CollegeBoard CSS/PROFILE as well as the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA).  You will have completed, signed, and submitted these forms already to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) for their annual review of your federal income tax payment, i.e., your "federal income tax return."  So, you should have these forms in your possession.  

You will need copies of these tax forms in order to complete your PROFILE and FAFSA, the two applications for financial aid consideration.  The PROFILE is your application for consideration of institutional aid from Swarthmore College.  The FAFSA is your application for consideration of federal aid from the United States federal government.  You will be asked to submit electronic copies of your tax forms, for the given year (exactly as they were submitted to the IRS), to Swarthmore College via an upload process called IDOC (pronounced "eye-dok").  

Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office uses these forms to verify the information that you/your parents reported on your PROFILE and/or FAFSA aid applications.  Please note that depending on your individual family income situation you may not possess or have to submit every one of the forms/documents listed below.  You may also be asked for less common forms that are not listed here.  This list is merely a guide to the more common forms.

 

W-2 Form

The W-2 is a pre-filled document provided by an employer to an employee.  It is mailed or provided to the employee usually in January.  It details the wage earnings earned by the employee in the most recent calendar tax year.  You will use it to complete both your U.S. federal income tax returns for the IRS and your FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE financial aid applications for the colleges/universities where you wish to apply.  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office requests a copy of each W-2 in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid applications, the FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE.  Click here for a picture of the W-2.

1099 Form(s)

The 1099 form is a series of documents the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) refers to as "information returns." There are a number of different 1099 forms that report the various types of income you may receive throughout the year other than the salary your employer pays you. The person or entity that pays you is responsible for filling out the appropriate 1099 tax form and sending it to you by Jan. 31. (Source:TurboTax.com) 

  • SSA -1099 if you or your parent(s) receive social security income or benefits
  • 1099-MISC if you are an independent contractor; received from each client that pays you above a certain amount each tax year
  • 1099-DIV if you own a portfolio of stock investments or mutual funds
  • 1099-INT if you have a savings account
  • 1099-G if you receive compensation from the U.S. federal government, commonly from unemployment income
  • 1099-R if you withdrew from a retirement account
  • 1099-C if you receive a cancellation of debt from a creditor

 

Form 1040

The 1040 form is the main part of the U.S. federal income tax return that you submit to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) each year.  Depending on your situation, you may complete either a 1040, a 1040A, or a 1040EZ.  Your 1040 is what you will use to complete the FAFSA and CSS/PROFILE.  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the 1040 in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid applications, the FAFSA and the CSS/PROFILE.  Click the following for a picture of the 1040; 1040A; 1040EZ.

Form 1041

The 1041 form is a form of the U.S. federal income tax return that you submit to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) if you have income from an estate or trust.  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the 1041 in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid application.  Click the following for a picture of the 1041.

Schedule A

The Schedule A is the form that you will complete if your parents utilize the 1040 form and they itemize the deductions to their annual income that is assessed by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  If you are reporting an itemized (non-standard) deduction on line 40 of the 1040, you will have to complete a Schedule A as part of your federal income tax return for the IRS.  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the Schedule A in order to verify information that your family reports on your financial aid application.  Click here for a picture of the Schedule A.

Schedule C

The Schedule C is the form that you will complete as part of your annual federal income tax return if you have earnings from a sole proprietorship (solo business).  If you are reporting income or loss of income on line 12 of the 1040, you will more than likely have to complete a Schedule C as part of your federal income tax return for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the Schedule C in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid applications, the FAFSA and the CSS/PROFILE.  Click here for a picture of the Schedule C.

Schedule E

The Schedule E is the form that you will complete as part of your annual federal income tax return if you have earnings from rental real estate, royalties, partnerships, S corporations, estates, trusts, etc.  If you are reporting income or loss of income on line 17 of the 1040, you will more than likely have to complete a Schedule E as part of your federal income tax return for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the Schedule E in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid applications, the FAFSA and the CSS/PROFILE.  Click here for a picture of the Schedule E.

Schedule F

The Schedule F is the form that you will complete as part of your annual federal income tax return if you have earnings from farm ownership.  If you are reporting income or loss of income on line 18 of the 1040, you will more than likely have to complete a Schedule F as part of your federal income tax return for the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).  Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office may request a copy of the Schedule F in order to verify income that your family reports on your financial aid applications, the FAFSA and the CSS/PROFILE.  Click here for a picture of the Schedule F.

 

Business Ownership Forms 

If your parents own or are a partner in a business, and they file any of the forms below with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), we will need them to be submitted as well with your financial aid application.

  • 1120:  If your parents have ownership in a C-corporation, they will have filed this form with the IRS.  We need a copy of the form to verify income.  It would need to be uploaded via the IDOC ("eye dok") process after submitting your CSS/Profile.   Click here for a picture of Form 1120.
  • 1120S: If your parents have ownership in a S-corporation, they will have filed this form with the IRS.  We need a copy of the form to verify income.  It would need to be uploaded via the IDOC ("eye dok") process after submitting your CSS/Profile.   Click here for a picture of Form 1120S.
  • 1065: Sometimes referred to as a "partnership return," if your parents have ownership in a Business Partnership, they will have filed this form with the IRS.  We need a copy of the form to verify income.  It would need to be uploaded via the IDOC ("eye dok") process after submitting your CSS/Profile.   Click here for a picture of Form 1065.
  • K-1:  If your parents have ownership in an S-corporation (Form 1120S) or a Partnership (Form 1065), the K-1 is a form that they would receive also from the S-corporation or Partnership.  The K-1 is sent to each owner/partner and is used to report the incomes, losses, and dividends of the business owners/partners.  Click the following for a picture of a K-1 for Form 1120S or a K-1 for Form 1065.

 

International/Non-U.S. citizen students

The Financial Aid Office will require you to use attested, third party income and asset documentation to complete the CollegeBoard CSS/PROFILE, your annual application for consideration of need-based financial aid from Swarthmore College.  Official income documentation varies from country to country.  Whichever income documentation pertains to your home country is the documentation that you should use to complete your CollegeBoard CSS/PROFILE.  If your home country has an annual reporting of income to a national agency, similar to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) in the United States, you very likely have these documents in your possession already.

Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office will require you to submit electronic copies of the documentation that you will use to complete the PROFILE via an upload process to a College-owned online portal.  Prospective applicants will use the portal found on their "applicant status page" on their Admissions Office portal.  Returning students will use MySwarthmore. 

Swarthmore College's Financial Aid Office uses the forms you upload to IDOC to verify the information that you/your parents reported on your PROFILE.  If your parents own a business, or they do not have official income documentation, they will need to request third party income documentation from their employer(s) and/or present a signed letter on company letterhead that has been attested and that includes the name, signature, and company server email address of the person verifying your income.  The documentation must be legitimate and may not be easily reproduced.  The onus of providing genuine verifiable documentation rests with your family.