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Tax Amendment

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Tax Amendment

Tax amendment 35. Tax amendment   Education Credits Table of Contents Introduction Useful Items - You may want to see: Who Can Claim an Education Credit Qualified Education ExpensesNo Double Benefit Allowed Adjustments to Qualified Education Expenses Introduction For 2013, there are two tax credits available to persons who pay expenses for higher (postsecondary) education. Tax amendment They are: The American opportunity credit, and The lifetime learning credit. Tax amendment The chapter will present an overview of these education credits. Tax amendment To get the detailed information you will need to claim either of the credits, and for examples illustrating that information, see chapters 2 and 3 of Publication 970. Tax amendment Can you claim more than one education credit this year?   For each student, you can choose for any year only one of the credits. Tax amendment For example, if you choose to take the American opportunity credit for a child on your 2013 tax return, you cannot, for that same child, also claim the lifetime learning credit for 2013. Tax amendment   If you are eligible to claim the American opportunity credit and you are also eligible to claim the lifetime learning credit for the same student in the same year, you can choose to claim either credit, but not both. Tax amendment   If you pay qualified education expenses for more than one student in the same year, you can choose to take the American opportunity and the lifetime learning credits on a per-student, per-year basis. Tax amendment This means that, for example, you can claim the American opportunity credit for one student and the lifetime learning credit for another student in the same year. Tax amendment Table 35-1. Tax amendment Comparison of Education Credits Caution. Tax amendment You can claim both the American opportunity credit and the lifetime learning credit on the same return—but not for the same student. Tax amendment   American Opportunity Credit Lifetime Learning Credit Maximum credit Up to $2,500 credit per eligible student Up to $2,000 credit per return Limit on modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) $180,000 if married filing jointly;  $90,000 if single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) $127,000 if married filing jointly;  $63,000 if single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) Refundable or nonrefundable 40% of credit may be refundable Credit limited to the amount of tax you must pay on your taxable income Number of years of postsecondary education Available ONLY if the student had not completed the first 4 years of postsecondary education before 2013 Available for all years 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) the Hope credit was claimed) Available for an unlimited number of years Type of program required Student must be pursuing a program leading to a degree or other recognized education credential Student does not need to be pursuing a program leading to 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 tax year Available for one or more courses Felony drug conviction At the end of 2013, the student had not been convicted of a felony for possessing or distributing a controlled substance Felony drug convictions do not make the student ineligible 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 fees required for enrollment or attendance (including amounts required to be paid to the institution for course-related books, supplies, and equipment) Payments for academic periods Payments made in 2013 for academic periods beginning in 2013 or beginning in the first 3 months of 2014 Differences between the American opportunity and lifetime learning credits. Tax amendment   There are several differences between these two credits. Tax amendment These differences are summarized in Table 35-1, later. Tax amendment Useful Items - You may want to see: Publication 970 Tax Benefits for Education Form (and Instructions) 8863 Education Credits (American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning Credits) 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. Tax amendment The credits are based on the amount of qualified education expenses paid for the student in 2013 for academic periods beginning in 2013 and in the first 3 months of 2014. Tax amendment For example, if you paid $1,500 in December 2013 for qualified tuition for the spring 2014 semester beginning in January 2014, you may be able to use that $1,500 in figuring your 2013 education credit(s). Tax amendment Academic period. Tax amendment   An academic period includes a semester, trimester, quarter, or other period of study (such as a summer school session) as reasonably determined by an educational institution. Tax amendment In the case of an educational institution that uses credit hours or clock hours and does not have academic terms, each payment period can be treated as an academic period. Tax amendment Eligible educational institution. Tax amendment   An eligible educational institution is any college, university, vocational school, or other postsecondary educational institution eligible to participate in a student aid program administered by the U. Tax amendment S. Tax amendment Department of Education. Tax amendment It includes virtually all accredited public, nonprofit, and proprietary (privately owned profit-making) postsecondary institutions. Tax amendment The educational institution should be able to tell you if it is an eligible educational institution. Tax amendment   Certain educational institutions located outside the United States also participate in the U. Tax amendment S. Tax amendment Department of Education's Federal Student Aid (FSA) programs. Tax amendment Who can claim a dependent's expenses. Tax amendment   If an exemption is allowed as a deduction for any person who claims the student as a dependent, all qualified education expenses of the student are treated as having been paid by that person. Tax amendment Therefore, only that person can claim an education credit for the student. Tax amendment If a student is not claimed as a dependent on another person's tax return, only the student can claim a credit. Tax amendment Expenses paid by a third party. Tax amendment   Qualified education expenses paid on behalf of the student by someone other than the student (such as a relative) are treated as paid by the student. Tax amendment However, qualified education expenses paid (or treated as paid) by a student who is claimed as a dependent on your tax return are treated as paid by you. Tax amendment Therefore, you are treated as having paid expenses that were paid by the third party. Tax amendment For more information and an example see Who Can Claim a Dependent's Expenses in Pub. Tax amendment 970, chapter 2 or 3. Tax amendment Who cannot claim a credit. Tax amendment   You cannot take an education credit if any of the following apply. Tax amendment You are claimed as a dependent on another person's tax return, such as your parent's return. Tax amendment Your filing status is married filing separately. Tax amendment You (or your spouse) were a nonresident alien for any part of 2013 and did not elect to be treated as a resident alien for tax purposes. Tax amendment Your MAGI is one of the following. Tax amendment American opportunity credit: $180,000 or more if married filing jointly, or $90,000 or more if single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er). Tax amendment Lifetime learning credit: $127,000 or more if married filing jointly, or $63,000 or more if single, head of household, or qualifying widow(er) . Tax amendment   Generally, your MAGI is the amount on your Form 1040, line 38, or Form 1040A, line 22. Tax amendment However, if you are filing Form 2555, Form 2555–EZ, or Form 4563, or are excluding income from Puerto RIco, add to the amount on your Form 1040, line 38, or Form 1040A, line 22, the amount of income you excluded. Tax amendment For details, see Pub. Tax amendment 970. Tax amendment    Figure 35-A may be helpful in determining if you can claim an education credit on your tax return. Tax amendment The American opportunity credit will always be greater than or equal to the lifetime learning credit for any student who is eligible for both credits. Tax amendment However, if any of the conditions for the American opportunity credit, listed in Table 35-1 earlier, are not met for any student, you cannot take the American opportunity credit for that student. Tax amendment You may be able to take the lifetime learning credit for part or all of that student's qualified education expenses instead. Tax amendment See Pub. Tax amendment 970 for information on other education benefits. Tax amendment Qualified Education Expenses Generally, qualified education expenses are amounts paid in 2013 for tuition and fees required for the student's enrollment or attendance at an eligible educational institution. Tax amendment It does not matter whether the expenses were paid in cash, by check, by credit or debit card, or with borrowed funds. Tax amendment For course-related books, supplies, and equipment, only certain expenses qualify. Tax amendment American opportunity credit: Qualified education expenses include amounts spent on books, supplies, and equipment needed for a course of study, whether or not the materials are purchased from the educational institution as a condition of enrollment or attendance. Tax amendment Lifetime learning credit: Qualified education expenses include amounts for books, supplies, and equipment only if required to be paid to the institution as a condition of enrollment or attendance. Tax amendment Qualified education expenses include nonacademic fees, such as student activity fees, athletic fees, or other expenses unrelated to the academic course of instruction, only if the fee must be paid to the institution as a condition of enrollment or attendance. Tax amendment However, fees for personal expenses (described below) are never qualified education expenses. Tax amendment Qualified education expenses for either credit do not include amounts paid for: Personal expenses. Tax amendment This means room and board, insurance, medical expenses (including student health fees), transportation, and other similar personal, living, or family expenses. Tax amendment Any course or other education involving sports, games, or hobbies, or any noncredit course, unless such course or other education is part of the student's degree program or (for the lifetime learning credit only) helps the student acquire or improve job skills. Tax amendment You should receive Form 1098–T, Tuition Statement, from the institution reporting either payments received in 2013 (box 1) or amounts billed in 2013 (box 2). Tax amendment However, the amount in box 1 or 2 of Form 1098–T may be different from the amount you paid (or are treated as having paid). Tax amendment In completing Form 8863, use only the amounts you actually paid (plus any amounts you are treated as having paid) in 2013, reduced as necessary, as described in Adjustments to Qualified Education Expenses , later. Tax amendment Qualified education expenses paid on behalf of the student by someone other than the student (such as a relative) are treated as paid by the student. Tax amendment Qualified education expenses paid (or treated as paid) by a student who is claimed as a dependent on your tax return are treated as paid by you. Tax amendment If you or the student takes a deduction for higher education expenses, such as on Schedule A or C (Form 1040), you cannot use those expenses in your qualified education expenses when figuring your education credits. Tax amendment Qualified education expenses for any academic period must be reduced by any tax-free educational assistance allocable to that academic period. Tax amendment See Adjustments to Qualified Education Expenses, later. Tax amendment Prepaid Expenses. Tax amendment   Qualified education expenses paid in 2013 for an academic period that begins in the first 3 months of 2014 can be used in figuring an education credit for 2013 only. Tax amendment See Academic period , earlier. Tax amendment For example, if you pay $2,000 in December 2013 for qualified tuition for the 2014 winter quarter that begins in January 2014, you can use that $2,000 in figuring an education credit for 2013 only (if you meet all the other requirements). Tax amendment    You cannot use any amount you paid in 2012 or 2014 to figure the qualified education expenses you use to figure your 2013 education credit(s). Tax amendment Paid with borrowed funds. Tax amendment   You can claim an education credit for qualified education expenses paid with the proceeds of a loan. Tax amendment Use the expenses to figure the credit for the year in which the expenses are paid, not the year in which the loan is repaid. Tax amendment Treat loan payments sent directly to the educational institution as paid on the date the institution credits the student's account. Tax amendment Student withdraws from class(es). Tax amendment   You can claim an education credit for qualified education expenses not refunded when a student withdraws. Tax amendment No Double Benefit Allowed You cannot do any of the following. Tax amendment Deduct higher education expenses on your income tax return (as, for example, a business expense) and also claim an education credit based on those same expenses. Tax amendment Claim more than one education credit based on the same qualified education expenses. Tax amendment Claim an education credit based on the same expenses used to figure the tax-free portion of a distribution from a Coverdell education savings account (ESA) or qualified tuition program (QTP). Tax amendment Claim an education credit based on qualified education expenses paid with educational assistance, such as a tax-free scholarship, grant, or employer-provided educational assistance. Tax amendment See Adjustments to Qualified Education Expenses, next. Tax amendment Adjustments to Qualified Education Expenses For each student, reduce the qualified education expenses paid in 2013 by or on behalf of that student under the following rules. Tax amendment The result is the amount of adjusted qualified education expenses for each student. Tax amendment Tax-free educational assistance. Tax amendment   For tax-free educational assistance received in 2013, reduce the qualified educational expenses for each academic period by the amount of tax-free educational assistance allocable to that academic period. Tax amendment See Academic period , earlier. Tax amendment      Tax-free educational assistance includes:    Tax-free parts of scholarships and fellowships (see chapter 12 of this publication and chapter 1 of Pub. Tax amendment 970), The tax-free part of Pell grants (see chapter 1 of Pub. Tax amendment 970), The tax-free part of employer-provided educational assistance (see Pub. Tax amendment 970), Veterans' educational assistance (see chapter 1 of Pub. Tax amendment 970), and Any other nontaxable (tax-free) payments (other than gifts or inheritances) received as educational assistance. Tax amendment Generally, any scholarship or fellowship is treated as tax-free educational assistance. Tax amendment However, a scholarship or fellowship is not treated as tax-free educational assistance to the extent the student includes it in gross income (if the student is required to file a tax return) for the year the scholarship or fellowship is received and either: The scholarship or fellowship (or any part of it) must be applied (by its terms) to expenses (such as room and board) other than qualified education expenses as defined in Qualified education expenses in Pub. Tax amendment 970, chapter 1; or The scholarship or fellowship (or any part of it) may be applied (by its terms) to expenses (such as room and board) other than qualified education expenses as defined in Qualified education expenses in Pub. Tax amendment 970, chapter 1. Tax amendment You may be able to increase the combined value of an education credit and certain educational assistance if the student includes some or all of the educational assistance in income in the year received. Tax amendment For details, see Adjustments of Qualified Education Expenses, in chapters 2 and 3 of Pub. Tax amendment 970. Tax amendment Some tax-free educational assistance received after 2013 may be treated as a refund of qualified education expenses paid in 2013. Tax amendment This tax-free educational assistance is any tax-free educational assistance received by you or anyone else after 2013 for qualified education expenses paid on behalf of a student in 2013 (or attributable to enrollment at an eligible educational institution during 2013). Tax amendment If this tax-free educational assistance is received after 2013 but before you file your 2013 income tax return, see Refunds received after 2013 but before your income tax return is filed, later. Tax amendment If this tax-free educational assistance is received after 2013 and after you file your 2013 income tax return, see Refunds received after 2013 and after your income tax return is filed, later. Tax amendment Refunds. Tax amendment   A refund of qualified education expenses may reduce qualified education expenses for the tax year or may require you to repay (recapture) the credit that you claimed in an earlier year. Tax amendment Some tax-free educational assistance received after 2013 may be treated as a refund. Tax amendment See Tax-free educational assistance, earlier. Tax amendment Refunds received in 2013. Tax amendment   For each student, figure the adjusted qualified education expenses for 2013 by adding all the qualified education expenses paid in 2013 and subtracting any refunds of those expenses received from the eligible educational institution during 2013. Tax amendment Refunds received after 2013 but before your income tax return is filed. Tax amendment   If anyone receives a refund after 2013 of qualified education expenses paid on behalf of a student in 2013 and the refund is received before you file your 2013 income tax return, reduce the amount of qualified education expenses for 2013 by the amount of the refund. Tax amendment Refunds received after 2013 and after your income tax return is filed. Tax amendment   If anyone receives a refund after 2013 of qualified education expenses paid on behalf of a student in 2013 and the refund is received after you file your 2013 income tax return, you may need to repay some or all of the credit that you claimed. Tax amendment See Credit recapture, next. Tax amendment Credit recapture. Tax amendment    If any tax-free educational assistance for the qualified education expenses paid in 2013, or any refund of your qualified education expenses paid in 2013, is received after you file your 2013 income tax return, you must recapture (repay) any excess credit. Tax amendment You do this by refiguring the amount of your adjusted qualified education expenses for 2013 by reducing the expenses by the amount of the refund or tax-free educational assistance. Tax amendment You then refigure your education credit(s) for 2013 and figure the amount by which your 2013 tax liability would have increased if you had claimed the refigured credit(s). Tax amendment Include that amount as an additional tax for the year the refund or tax-free assistance was received. Tax amendment Example. Tax amendment    You paid $8,000 tuition and fees in December 2013 for your child's Spring semester beginning in January 2014. Tax amendment You filed your 2013 tax return on February 3, 2014, and claimed a lifetime learning credit of $1,600 ($8,000 qualified education expense paid x . Tax amendment 20). Tax amendment You claimed no other tax credits. Tax amendment After you filed your return, your child withdrew from two courses and you received a refund of $1,400. Tax amendment You must refigure your 2013 lifetime learning credit using $6,600 ($8,000 qualified education expenses − $1,400 refund). Tax amendment The refigured credit is $1,320 and your tax liability increased by $280. Tax amendment You must include the difference of $280 ($1,600 credit originally claimed − $1,320 refigured credit) as additional tax on your 2014 income tax return. Tax amendment See the instructions for your 2014 income tax return to determine where to include this tax. Tax amendment If you also pay qualified education expenses in 2014 for an academic period that begins in the first 3 months of 2014 and you receive tax-free educational assistance, or a refund, as described above, you may choose to reduce your qualified education expenses for 2014 instead of reducing your expenses for 2013. Tax amendment Amounts that do not reduce qualified education expenses. Tax amendment   Do not reduce qualified education expenses by amounts paid with funds the student receives as: Payment for services, such as wages, A loan, A gift, An inheritance, or A withdrawal from the student's personal savings. Tax amendment   Do not reduce the qualified education expenses by any scholarship or fellowship reported as income on the student's tax return in the following situations. Tax amendment The use of the money is restricted, by the terms of the scholarship or fellowship, to costs of attendance (such as room and board) other than qualified education expenses, as defined in Chapter 1 of Pub. Tax amendment 970. Tax amendment The use of the money is not restricted. Tax amendment   For examples, see chapter 2 in Pub. Tax amendment 970. Tax amendment Figure 35-A. Tax amendment Can You Claim an Education Credit for 2013? This image is too large to be displayed in the current screen. Tax amendment Please click the link to view the image. Tax amendment Figure 35-A. Tax amendment Can You Claim an Education Credit for 2013? Prev  Up  Next   Home   More Online Publications
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The Tax Amendment

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