Important: Form 1098T and Education Tax Credits
Educational institutions are required by law to report to students the amount of qualified tuition and related expenses (fees) paid by them during the calendar year.
The purpose of the 1098T form is to help the student determine whether they are eligible to claim tax credit or deduction on their individual income tax returns. The 1098T form provides taxpayers with tuition payment information to assist them with their tax return preparation.
Educational institutions are not required to provide the 1098T form to:
- Students who enroll in courses which no academic credit is received (this includes the Continuing Education programs)
- Nonresident alien students
- Students whose qualified tuition and related expenses are entirely waived or paid with scholarships or grants
What has changed with the 1098-T?
In 2017 and prior Eckerd College reported qualified CHARGES in Box 2.
Effective January 1, 2018 the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is requiring colleges and universities to begin reporting what students paid to an educational institution. Payments made prior to 01/01/2018 toward 2018 spring semester qualified tuition will not appear on the Form 1098-T either in 2017 or 2018 for the following reasons:
- On the 2017 form 1098-T, Eckerd College was reporting qualified charges in Box 2. Spring 2018 charges were incurred in December and reported in Box 2 on the 2017 Form 1098-T.
- On the 2018 form 1098-T, Eckerd College will be reporting qualified payments made in 2018 in Box 1.
- While the transition can be a bit confusing, nothing has been lost or misreported during the transition from reporting in Box 2 in 2017, to reporting payments in Box 1 in 2018.
What amounts are reported on Form 1098-T?
- Box 1 qualified payments made towards qualifying expenses within the calendar year.
- Box 2 blank – no longer applicable in 2018
- Box 3 check this box if there was a change with method of reporting
- Box 4 represents reductions made to amounts billed for qualified tuition and related expenses that were reported for a prior calendar year.
- Box 5 represents the total amount of scholarships, grants or 3rd Party Sponsor Credits that were processed for the payment of qualified tuition and related expenses.
- Box 6 represents the amount of reductions or refunds made for scholarships or grants that were reported for a prior year
- Box 7 check this box if any payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses reported for 2018 relate to an academic period that begins in January through March 2019.
- Box 8 is only checked if you have been at least a half-time student (6 credit hours) for a least one academic period that began during the calendar year.
- Box 9 is checked if you were enrolled as a graduate student for at least one academic period during the calendar year for which reporting is required.
What do you do with the 1098-T form?
Keep the form for your personal records and share it with your tax preparer. Eckerd College sends your 1098-T information to the IRS. The information contained in the 1098-T will help you to determine if you may claim various tax credits and/or deductions for qualified educational expenses. Please be aware that the 1098-T captures financial information on a calendar year basis and you will likely need your statement of account and other receipts to calculate your tax credit.
The link below provides more detailed information about the Hope Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit.
IRS Publication 970 (info on tax credits) – www.irs.gov
If you have questions and need assistance in determining whether you are eligible to claim an Education Tax Credit, please contact a tax professional to assist you with this. You may contact the IRS at their website or by telephone at 1.800.829.1040.
Eckerd College will not provide income tax advice.
FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)
What educational expenses are considered as qualified tuition and related expenses?
Qualified tuition and related expenses include tuition, registration fees, student services fees, course fees, etc. Examples of non-qualified expenses include housing fees, meal plan fees, health services fees, late fees, etc.
Last year there was an amount in Box2. This year, there is an amount in Box 1. Why the change?
Effective with the 2018 tax year, the IRS requires that all institutions report payments received toward qualified tuition and related expenses in Box 1 on the 1098T tax form.
Schools can no longer report amounts billed for qualified and related expenses in Box 2.
What other information do I need to claim the tax credit?
The 1098T tax form is designed and regulated by the IRS to help determine if you are eligible for a tax credit. The form does not contain all of the information needed to claim a tax credit, some information must come from the student’s personal statement of account. Your statement of account is available on line and accessed through ECWeb.
What am I supposed to do with the 1098-T form?
Keep it for your personal records and share it with your tax preparer; Eckerd College sends your 1098-T information to the IRS. The information contained in the 1098-T will help you to determine if you may claim various tax credits and/or deductions for qualified educational expenses. Please be aware that the 1098-T captures financial information on a calendar year basis (January 1 –December 31) and you will likely need your statements of account (also available by logging into ECWebl) and other personal receipts (eg. books & supplies) to calculate your tax credits and deductions.
When will I receive my 1098T tax form?
If you consented to an electronic format, the 1098T form will be available the last week in January and an email notification will be sent. Otherwise, a paper format will be mailed to your permanent address on file the last week in January.
I lost or misplaced my 1098T tax form, where do I get a copy?
If you have consented to an electronic form you may access a copy from your ebill account through ECWeb. You may also contact the Bursar’s office via email at email@example.com or, call 727.864.8321 or 727.864.7694.