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Educational Tax Credits

Form 1098-T

In previous years, your Form 1098-T included a figure in Box 2 that represented the qualified tuition and related expenses (QTRE) RIT billed to your student account for the prior calendar (tax) year. Due to a change to institutional reporting requirements under federal law, beginning with tax year 2018, RIT will report in Box 1 the amount of QTRE you paid during the year.

 

Depending on your income (or your family’s income, if you are a dependent), whether you were considered full or half-time enrolled, and the amount of your qualified educational expenses for the year, you may be eligible for a federal education tax credit. Detailed information about claiming education tax credits is available in IRS Publication 970, page 9.

 

The dollar amounts reported on your Form 1098-T may assist you in completing IRS Form 8863 – the form used for calculating the education tax credits that a taxpayer may claim as part of your tax return.  You also have access to your RIT student account through eservices to obtain detailed account transactions for the calendar year.

 

RIT is unable to provide you with individual tax advice, but should you have questions, we recommend that you seek the counsel of an informed tax preparer or adviser.

 

For more information about Federal Form 1098-T, see IRS Publication 970.

 

 

What is Form 1098-T?
IRS Form 1098-T provides information to students, from educational institutions, which may be used in determining a student’s eligibility for education tax credits.

When will I receive my Form 1098-T?
1098-Ts are processed and mailed by an outside agency, Heartland ECSI. The forms are mailed to eligible students between January 15 and January 31.

How can I access my Form 1098-T online?
Your 1098-T is available on Heartland ECSI's web site or by calling Heartland ECSI at 866.428.1098. RIT's school code is 02.

I received a Form 1098-T from RIT.  Does that mean I qualify for an education tax credit?
Not necessarily; determination of eligibility is the responsibility of the taxpayer.

How can I determine if I am eligible for an educational tax credit?
You or your parents may be eligible for the educational tax credits on your tax return.  For more details, refer to IRS Publication 970 or see your tax preparer.

What is on Form 1098-T?

  • RIT’s name, address, and taxpayer identification number
  • Student’s name, address, and taxpayer identification number
  • Whether the student was enrolled in at least half-time or full-time academic workload for at least one academic period
  • Whether the student was enrolled exclusively in a graduate-level program
  • Amount of qualified tuition and fees paid to RIT during the prior calendar year

 

What information is reflected in the various boxes on the Form 1098-T?

  • Box 1:  The total payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses, less any related reimbursement or refunds.
  • Box 2:  No Longer Used
  • Box 3:  Indicates that we have changed our reporting method to payments received. 
  • Box 4: This box will be blank for 2018 due to the change of reporting method.
  • Box 5: The total of all scholarships or grants administered and processed by RIT.  The amount of scholarships or grants for the calendar year (including those not reported by RIT) may reduce the amount of any allowable tuition and fees deduction or the education credit you may claim for the year.
  • Box 6:  This box will be blank for 2018 due to the change of reporting method.
  • Box 7:  If this box is checked, the amount in Box 1 included amounts for an academic period prior to the previous year.  See IRS Publication 970 for how to report these amounts.
  • Box 8:  Indicates whether you are considered to be carrying at least one-half the normal full-time workload for your course of study at RIT. 
  • Box 9:  Indicates whether you are considered to be enrolled in a program leading to a graduate degree, graduate-level certificate, or other recognized graduate-level educational credential. 
  • Box 10:  The total amount of reimbursements or refunds of qualified tuition and related expenses made by an insurer.  The amount of reimbursements or refunds for the calendar year may reduce the amount of any allowable tuition and fees deduction or education credit you may claim for the year.

 

The Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) on my Form 1098-T is missing or incorrect.  What should I do?
Reporting to the IRS depends primarily on your SSN or ITIN.  It is very important for you to have the correct information on file with RIT.  If RIT does not have an SSN on file, or if your SSN is incorrect, complete and return, in-person, an IRS W-9 form to the RIT Registrar’s Office.

Why didn't I receive a Form 1098-T?
There are multiple reasons why you may not have received a 1098-T:

  • If you are classified as a non-resident alien, RIT is not required to produce a 1098-T
  • Inaccurate address (i.e., outdated or inaccurate address on file with RIT).  If this occurred, you can update your information in your student center and you may access the 1098T at Heartland ECSI.
  • If eligible, your 1098-T is available on Heartland ECSI's web site or by calling Heartland ECSI at 866.428.1098. RIT’s school code is 02.

What changed for calendar year 2018 reporting?
Congress and the IRS eliminated the option for colleges and universities to report ‘Amounts Billed’ on Form 1098-T.  Colleges and universities must now report ‘Payments Received’ for qualified tuition and expenses.

What does the 2018 change mean for you?
You will no longer see any amounts in Box 2 (Amounts Billed); instead, the amounts will be displayed in Box 1 (Payments Received).
 


For the transition to ‘Payments Received’ (Box 1) for 2018, the potential for overlapping payments for the Spring 2018 term exists.  The ‘Reported Method Changed’ indicator (Box 3) will be checked this year to advise the IRS.

What happens if I make a payment for Spring 2019 in December 2018?
If the payment is received and processed by RIT prior to January 1, 2019, the information will appear on the 2018 Form 1098-T.

What happens if I make a payment for Spring 2019 in December 2018, but withdraw enrollment in 2019?
The 2018 Form 1098-T will not be changed; however, the following year’s form will report any refund associated with the 2018 payment.

My Box 5 amount is greater than Box 1; is it taxable?
It may or may not be (dependent upon the source of funds).  Please refer to IRS Publication 970.

A third party paid my tuition.  How is this reported on my 1098-T?
Payments received from a third party are reported in both Box 1 and Box 5.  Please speak with a tax adviser for information about how this impacts any potential tax credit, etc.

I received a tuition waiver; how is that reported on my 1098-T?
Tuition waivers will reduce the sum of a student’s QTRE (Qualified Tuition and Related Expenses), therefore, it lowers the total potential tax credit available.

Was this information reported to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS)?
Section 65050S of the Internal Revenue Code, as enacted by the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, requires institutions to file information returns to assist taxpayers and the IRS in determining the amount of qualified tuition and related expenses (qualified expenses) for which an education tax credit is allowable under section 25A (American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning Education tax credits), as well as other tax benefits for higher education expenses.

Am I required to attach the Form 1098-T to my tax return?
No.  The primary purpose of the 1098-T is to inform you that RIT has provided the required information to the IRS to assist them in determining who may be eligible to claim the tuition and fee deduction or education credits.  There is no IRS requirement that you claim a tuition and fees deduction or an education-related tax credit.

I am unsure about the impact of the information of Form 1098-T on my income tax filing.  Whom should I contact?
RIT is not able to provide individual tax or legal advice.  Please seek advice from the IRS or a tax professional.  Information is also available in the IRS Publication 970: Tax Benefits for Education.

Where can I get a list of payments made to RIT?
You can view payment details in eServices.  Your account details are listed by semester in the Semester Summary link.

What are examples of charges/costs that are not included on my Form 1098-T (partial list)?

  • Housing
  • Parking
  • Meal
  • Books
  • Health Services/Health Facilities

 

I made payments on my student loans.  Will you provide information on the amount of interest?
No; this information will be provided by your loan servicer(s) on Form 1098-E.

Form 1098-E
Form 1098-E reports interest paid on Federal Perkins Loan.
http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/i1098et.pdf provides detailed information.

 

Other Resources

American Opportunity Tax Credit

Lifetime Learning Credit

 

Use of Social Security Numbers

 

Important: Information regarding immigration, employment, and tax substantial authority are the responsibility of each individual.  Please keep in mind that no one from RIT, while in their official role at the university, can act as a tax consultant, give personal, legal, or tax advice, or represent an individual dealing with the Internal Revenue Service.  Thus, any assistance the above information may provide is given as a courtesy to you, and as such, should not be construed in any way as the rendering of legal or tax advice.