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Taxpayer Relief Act

Under the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, certain tax benefits may be available to students who have incurred qualified expenses for higher education. To assist you in the determination of eligibility for an education tax credit we have provided you with the information below:

Following are some highlights of the credit requirements:

American Opportunity Credit Lifetime Learning Credit
Maximum Credit Up to $2,500 credit per eligible student Up to $2,000 credit per return
Limited on modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) $180,000 if married filing jointly; $90,000 if single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) $124,000 if married filing jointly; $62,000 if single head of household, or qualifying widow(er)
Refundable or non-refundable 40% of credit may be refundable; the rest is nonrefundable Nonrefundable-credit limited to the amount of tax you must pay on your taxable income
Number of years of postsecondary education Available ONLY for 4 years of postsecondary education Available for all of postsecondary education and for courses to acquire or improve job skills
Number of tax years credit available Available ONLY for 4 tax years per eligible student (including any year(s) Hope credit was claimed Available for an unlimited number of years
Type of degree required Student must be pursuing a degree or other recognized education credential Student does not need to be pursuing a degree or other recognized education credential
Number of courses Student must be enrolled at least half time for at least one academic period beginning during the year Available for one or more courses
Felony drug conviction As of the end of 2012, the student had not been convicted of a felony for possessing or distributing a controlled substance Felony drug convictions are permitted
Qualified expenses Tuition, required enrollment fees, and course materials that the student needs for a course of study whether or not the materials are bought at the educational institution as a condition of enrollment or attendance Tuition and required enrollment fees (including amounts required to be paid to the institution for course-related books, supplies, and equipment)
Payments for academic periods Payments made in 2012 for academic periods beginning in 2012 or beginning in the first 3 months of 2013

YOU ARE ENCOURAGED TO CONFER WITH YOUR TAX ADVISOR TO DETERMINE YOUR ELIGIBILITY AND CREDIT OPTIONS. YOU MAY ALSO ACCESS THE IRS WEBSITE AT WWW.IRS.GOV

If you have any questions regarding the Form 1098-T you may also contact the Bursar’s Office at 456-8130.

Page last updated: February 6, 2013