Tax Credits, Forms, and More
The Taxpayer Relief Act enacted several benefits for college students, including the American Opportunity tax credit and the Lifetime Learning credit. Purdue Fort Wayne will electronically send or mail Internal Revenue Service Form 1098-T to all qualifying students who were billed for credit courses during 2020.
The American Opportunity tax credit was extended through December 2017. The credit modifies the existing American Opportunity tax credit. For more information, please visit the IRS website.
Downloadable Tax Documents
You can get forms and publications from the IRS website at the following links. Please note that all files are in PDF format unless otherwise indicated. You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view these files:
- Form 8863: education credits (American Opportunity, Hope, and Lifetime Learning)
- Publication 970: Tax Benefits for Education
- IRS Tax Information for Students
Frequently Asked Tax Questions
Find answers to many tax-related questions.
What has changed with my 1098-T?
Effective January 1, 2018, the IRS now requires universities to report what students paid to an educational institution. Payments made prior to January 1, 2018, toward the 2018 spring semester qualified tuition will not appear on the Form 1098-T, either in 2017 or 2018, for the following reasons:
- On Form 1098-T for 2017, Purdue Fort Wayne was reporting qualified charges in Box 2. Spring 2018 charges were incurred in November and reported in Box 2 on the 2017 Form 1098-T.
- On the 2018 Form 1098-T, Purdue Fort Wayne has reported qualified payments in Box 1.
- Your payment made prior to January 1, 2018, cannot be reported in 2018.
While the transition can be a bit confusing, nothing has been lost or misreported during the transition from reporting charges in Box 2 in 2017 to reporting payments in Box 1 in 2018.
How do I get my form?
You can log in to your goPFW student account and access your 1098-T by clicking on the yellow dollar sign, located under the Billing & Financial Aid tab. The 1098-T will be available January 31.
What is a Form 1098-T?
Colleges and universities are required, under Internal Revenue Code Section 6050S, to issue the Form 1098-T for the purpose of determining a taxpayer’s eligibility for various tax credits and/or deductions.
Does every student get a Form 1098-T?
Purdue Fort Wayne must file a Form 1098-T for each student enrolled for the given calendar year and for whom a reportable transaction is made. However, the IRS does not require Purdue Fort Wayne to provide a Form 1098-T in the following situations:
- Courses for which no academic credit is offered, even if the student is otherwise enrolled in a degree program
- Nonresident alien students
- Students whose qualified tuition and related expenses are entirely waived or paid entirely with scholarships and/or grants
- Students whose expenses are covered by a formal third-party billing arrangement
What fees are qualifying for tax purposes?
For purposes of the tuition and fees deduction, qualified education expenses are tuition and certain related expenses required for enrollment or attendance at an eligible educational institution. The housing, meal plan, orientation, payment plan, and other miscellaneous fees generally are not qualifying expenses for tax purposes. Please reference IRS Publication 970: Tax Benefits for Education for additional guidance (link to IRS Publication and Forms database provided below). Purdue Fort Wayne cannot legally provide tax advice. Please consult with a qualified tax preparer or the IRS if you have tax-related questions.
What amounts are reported on Form 1098-T?
Here’s a quick glance at the amounts that are reported on the IRS Form 1098-T:
- Box 1 is qualified payments made toward qualifying expenses within the calendar year.
- Box 2 represents amounts billed for qualified tuition and related expenses netted against any reductions (fee waivers, remissions) in charges for qualified tuition and related expenses.
- 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 third-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 8 is checked only if you have been at least a half-time student (6 credit hours) for at 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.
Do you send a copy of this form to the IRS?
Yes. Section 6050S 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 Internal Revenue Service in determining eligibility for the American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning education tax credits. The annual deadline to file the required tax information electronically is March 31, although data may be transmitted earlier.
I lost my 1098-T. What do I do now?
Log in to goPFW, look on the Enrollment tab, and click on Tax Notification (found under Registration Tools) to print a copy of your 1098-T. Since you don’t attach the 1098-T to your 1040, that’s not a problem. You can use your bills and receipts as the backup to claim the credit. For best results, all student account data should be opened using Internet Explorer.
What am I supposed to do with the 1098-T form?
Keep it for your personal records and share it with your tax preparer; Purdue Fort Wayne 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 to December 31) and that you will likely need your statements of account (also available from your TouchNet portal) and other personal receipts (e.g., books and supplies) to calculate your tax credits and deductions.
Which expenses qualify for the American Opportunity or Lifetime Learning credits?
Purdue Fort Wayne cannot legally provide tax advice. Please consult with a qualified tax preparer or the IRS if you have questions concerning how to use this form on your taxes. For additional support, please review the following resources and websites:
- IRS Publication and Forms
- Form 8863 Instructions for Education Credits
- Form 1040 Instructions [PDF]
- IRS Information on American Opportunity Credit
- IRS Information on Lifetime Learning Credit
- Compare Education Credits and Tuition and Fees Deduction
Who can claim an education credit?
You may be able to claim an education credit if you, your spouse, or a dependent you claim on your tax return was a student enrolled at or attending an eligible educational institution. If a student is claimed as a dependent on another’s tax return, only the person who claims the student as a dependent can claim a credit for the student’s qualified education expenses. If a student is not claimed as a dependent on another person’s tax return, only the student can claim the credit. If you claim an exemption on your tax return for an eligible student who is your dependent, treat any expenses paid (or deemed paid) by your dependent as if you had paid them. See additional restrictions for claiming the credit in the instructions to Form 8863 [PDF].