It's tax season — and if you or any dependents are in college, chances are you can claim some education credits when you file your return (thanks to the American Opportunity Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit).
Educational institutions are required, by law, to provide information to students who may qualify for these education credits through a Form 1098-T. Briar Cliff processes all 1098-Ts in house and mails them out via USPS.
If you haven't received a copy of your 1098-T, or you have specific questions about the amounts reported on your 1098-T, please contact the Business Office »
You can also refer to these FAQs:
What do I do with the 1098-T?
The purpose of the 1098-T is to help you and/or your tax professional determine if you are eligible for the American Opportunity Credit or the Lifetime Learning Credit. The 1098-T is purely informational. It should NOT be attached to your federal income tax return (like a W-2 is), however, you must have received this form in order to claim the American Opportunity Credit or the Lifetime Learning Credit on your federal tax return.
PLEASE NOTE: The amounts on your 1098-T form are for your information and may or may not be what you report on your federal tax return. Please consult your payment records and your tax professional.
How do I interpret the 1098-T form?
The following is an explanation of what each box on the 1098-T form contains:
- BOX 1: Payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses — This box will be left blank, because universities may choose whether to report payments received (BOX 1) or amounts billed on student accounts (BOX 2); they need not report both amounts. Briar Cliff University has chosen to report qualified tuition and related expense amounts billed.
- BOX 2: Amounts billed for qualified tuition and related expenses — In general, this box will contain the sum of all tuition, registration and required registration fees billed to a student’s account during a calendar year, less any amounts by which tuition was reduced due to a reduction in course load or withdrawal. The amount reported is not reduced by the scholarships and grants reported in BOX 5.
Amounts billed to a student account for housing, meal plan, books, fines or non-required fees will not be included in the Box 2 amount.
Please note that when the American Opportunity Credit or Lifetime Learning Credit is taken on the federal income tax return, the calculation of the credit is based on the amount of qualified educational expenses actually paid by the taxpayer during the calendar year. Briar Cliff University reports amounts billed to a student's account. Therefore, the amount you use to calculate your education credit will not necessarily be the same as the amount that appears in Box 2. You should use the information on the 1098-T form in conjunction with your own payment records to determine eligibility for the credits.
If you have questions about how to compute your education tax credit, you should consult your tax professional or refer to IRS Publication 970.
- BOX 3: This box will be left blank, since Briar Cliff University has not changed its current method of reporting from the previous year (2012).
- BOX 4: Adjustments made for a prior year — The amount in this box should be the sum of all reductions in tuition (refunded or not) related to amounts billed in a prior year. This amount is reported as a positive number per IRS requirements. However, it is actually a decrease to the amount that was reported on a prior year 1098-T. See "recapture" in the index to Pub. 970 to report a reduction in your credit or deduction.
- BOX 5: Scholarships or grants — This box contains the sum of all scholarships and grants that Briar Cliff University administered and processed for the student’s account during the calendar year. Awards included in this amount may pay qualified tuition expenses as well as housing, books, and other non-qualified expenses.
- BOX 6: Adjustments to scholarships or grants for a prior year — Decreases or refunds of scholarship amounts related to scholarships reported in a previous year are included in this box. This amount is reported as a positive number per IRS requirements. However, it is actually a decrease to the amount that was reported on a prior year 1098-T. You may have to file an amended income tax return for the prior year.
- BOX 7: This box will be checked if the amount reported in BOX 2 includes tuition or registration fees billed to a student account in the current year for a semester beginning in the next calendar year. For example, tuition billed in December 2013 for Spring semester 2014 will be reported on your 2013 1098-T. BOX 7 will be checked to indicate that this is the case.
- BOX 8: A check in this box indicates that you are or have been enrolled at Briar Cliff University at least half-time for at least one semester during the calendar year.
- BOX 9: This box will be checked if you are a student enrolled in a program leading to a graduate-level degree.
- BOX 10: This box is not used by Briar Cliff University, so it will be blank.
Which semesters are included on the 1098-T?
The 1098-T form will include amounts based on the calendar year. In a single calendar year, Briar Cliff University will always bill for Summer Session (May - July), and Fall semester (August). However, depending on when the student registered for classes, Spring semester may have been billed in December of the previous year or January of the current year. The latter will appear on next year's 1098-T statement, while the former will appear on the current 1098-T statement.
Example: If you were billed for the Spring 2013 semester in December of 2012, this was reported on your 2012 1098-T. If you were billed for the Spring 2013 semester in January of 2013, then this was reported on your 2013 1098-T. Likewise, if you were billed for the Spring 2014 semester in December of 2013, this will be reported on the 2013 1098-T statement. If you were billed for Spring 2014 in January of 2014, it will be reported on the 2014 1098-T statement. Check your records to see which applies to you.
How can I get help determining if I'm eligible for the credits?
Additional information concerning the American Opportunity Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit is available in IRS publication 970, Tax Benefits for Higher Education. You may also refer to the IRS Tax Website's Education Credits section for interactive assistance. Other questions concerning eligibility should be directed to your tax professional. Briar Cliff University cannot offer tax or legal advice.
I am a dependent on someone else's return. Can they take tax credit?
Yes, the person claiming you as a dependent can take the credit if you are otherwise eligible.
Where can I find a copy of my billing history?
The BCYOU! student portal has all the transactions for your student account. They are listed under the financial tab. If you need a calendar year copy of your student account statement, please contact the Business Office.
How can I find out how much tuition I paid?
Check our Academic Costs page for the most recent year's tuituion and fee schedules, or check your personal records for billing statements and cancelled checks.
I'm a non-resident of the U.S. Why am I getting a 1098-T Form?
The IRS does not require Briar Cliff University to file a Form 1098-T for foreign students who are not US residents for tax purposes. This is because non-resident alien students are not eligible for education tax benefits. However, Briar Cliff University cannot definitively determine which foreign students are residents for tax purposes. Also, the IRS does require Briar Cliff University to provide a 1098-T to a non-resident alien student who requests one. For these reasons, we provide 1098-T forms to all students who have a tax identification number on file with Briar Cliff University, including foreign students who may or may not be eligible for an education tax benefit.