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Last Updated December 2018 - An educaiton credit reduces the amount of tax owed on a individual's tax return. If the credit reduces your tax to less than zero, you may get a refund. There are two education credits available: the American Opportunity Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit.
The American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) can be worth a maximum annual benefit of $2,500 per eligible student. The credit is only available to students for the first four years they attend an eligible institution while pursuing a degree or certification.
The Lifetime Learning Credit (LLC) can have a maximum benefit up to $2,000 per tax return for both undergraduate and graduate students. The course of study must be either part of a post-secondary degree program or taken by the student to maintain or improve job skills. The credit is available for an unlimited number of tax years.
The IRS Form 1098-T (Tuition Statement) is issued to all students who attended an eligible educational institution and have made payments towards qualified tuition and related expenses during the previous calendar year. The information on Form 1098-T is used to determine if you are eligible to claim an education credit on your Federal Income Tax Return.
What information is reported on form 1098-T?
Qualified educational institutions are required to report the following for each student with qualified tuition and fees during the previous calendar year:
Social security number
Either payments received (Box 1) or amounts billed (Box 2) for qualified tuition and related expenses (Lone Star College System began reporting on payments received in 2018)
Whether your educational institution has changed their method of reporting (Box 3)
Reimbursements or refunds of qualified tuition and related expenses for payments that were received and reported in a prior year (Box 4)
The amount of scholarships or grants and VA benefits received (Box 5)
Adjustments to scholarships or grants for a prior year (Box 6)
Whether you were enrolled as at least a half-time student (Box 8)
Whether you were enrolled as a graduate student (Box 9)
When will the forms 1098-T be mailed?
Forms 1098-T must be postmarked by January 31st. You should receive your form 1098-T no later than the end of the first week in February.
Where will the 1098-T forms be mailed?
Forms 1098-T will be mailed to your permanent address on file with the college you attended.
Can I choose to receive my 1098-T form electronically instead of by mail?
Yes, you can opt-in to receive your 1098-T form electronically by following the link to the TaxSelect Electronic Consent (1098-T) Form. You must opt in by January 1st of the current calendar year to receive an e-form for the previous calendar year. If you opt-in to receiving the form electronically you will not be mailed a paper copy of the form.
How do I obtain a copy of my 1098-T form for previous years?
Copies of your 1098-T forms can be obtained directly from the Heartland ECSI website. Enter our school name as Lone Star College System. You can also contact Heartland ECSI at 1-866-428-1098. The school code that is needed for calling is EV.
If I registered and paid for continuing education classes, will I get a 1098-T form?
No. Lone Star College only generates 1098-T forms for credit courses.
I was in the TCP (Teachers Certification Program) but never received my 1098-T.
The Teachers Certification Program is a non credit hour program, therefore tuition and fees are not reportable on Form 1098-T.
I attended Lone Star College in the previous year. Why wasn’t I issued a 1098-T?
You may have not been issued a 1098-T for any of the below reasons:
You took courses where no academic credit was offered (continuing education courses)
You did not provide LSC a valid Social Security Number or Tax Identification Number
Your qualified tuition and related expenses were entirely waived or paid entirely with scholarships and/or grants
Your qualified tuition and related expenses were covered by a formal billing arrangement between Lone Star College and your employer or a governmental agency
You paid for your qualified tuition and related expenses in a prior calendar year
What should I do if I haven't received my 1098-T form?
Check to see if you fall under one of the exceptions listed above. If you don't and have not received a form 1098-T by the end of the first week in February copies can be obtained through the ECSI Website or by calling 1-866-428-1098 (use school code EV) .
What amounts are included in Box 1, "Payments Received for Qualified Tuition and Related Expenses?"
The total amount of payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses (QTRE) from all sources during the calendar year are included in Box 1. The amount reported is the total amount of payments received less any reimbursements or refunds made duirng the calendar year. This amount is not reduced by scholarships or grants reported in Box 5. Payments made for previous calendar years may be included in Box 1 if Lone Star College previously billed you for these amounts and these payments were made during the calendar year for which the form was generated.
If I used a Payment Plan, will the fees I paid be included in Box 1 of my 1098-T?
No. The Payment Plan setup fee and any late fee amounts are not included on the 1098-T because they are not eligible expenses for the tax credit.
If you have questions regarding the amounts in either Box 1 or 4, please contact the Business Office at the campus you attended during the previous calendar year.
If you have questions regarding the amounts in either Box 5 or 6, please contact the Financial Aid office at the campus you attended during the previous calendar year.
Lone Star College System does not provide tax return preparation assistance. To determine if you qualify for one of the education tax credits, or for more information regarding tax benefits for education, consult IRS Publication 970, your tax advisor, or the IRS by calling
1-800-829-1040 or visiting them online at http://www.irs.gov/.