My 1098-T Form

What is the 1098-T Form?
The 1098-T Form contains data elements to help you calculate your eligibility for the American Opportunity Credit (including the Hope Scholarship Credit) and Lifetime Learning Credit. The IRS requires schools to report payments received for qualified tuition and fees during the calendar year. Schools are also required to report scholarships and grants received in Box 5. Receipt of a 1098-T does not automatically establish eligibility for educational tax credits. You should consult a tax advisor to determine your eligibility.

Sample 1098-T Form:

Important Changes to Your 1098-T form starting in 2018:
In previous years, Tufts University’s 1098-T Box 2 reporting represented the qualified tuition and related expenses (QTRE) that was billed to your student account for the calendar (tax) year. Due to an IRS change to institutional reporting requirements under federal law, beginning with tax year 2018, we must report using the Box 1 method which reports the amount of QTRE you paid, including loans, during the year.

 
2017 and Prior Tax Years
2018 Tax Year and Beyond
Reported

Amounts billed for tuition and mandatory fees (Box 2) and adjustments made (Box 4) from January 1st through December 31st of calendar year

Amounts paid for qualified tuition and mandatory fees posted to the student account (Box 1) and adjustments made (Box 4) from January 1st through December 31st of calendar year

Reported

Scholarships and grants received (Box 5) and adjustments (Box 6) from January 1st through December 31st of calendar year

Scholarships and grants received (Box 5) and adjustments (Box 6) from January 1st through December 31st of calendar year

Not Reported

Room, board, and miscellaneous charges

Room, board, and miscellaneous charges

 

Note on Payment Posted Date: The posted date is based on when a payment was applied to student account. Online payments through eBill are posted in real-time. Payments that are mailed, wired (Flywire), or made through the Cashnet Monthly Payment Plan may take up to a business week to post. To assure these payments are reported in the current tax year, please allow for sufficient processing time. Tufts University is unable to alter or back-date posted dates.

Federal aid (including Federal loans) cannot be posted to the student account until 10 days prior to the first day of the semester. This means that federal aid associated with the spring semester may not be posted until January, and thus will be reported on the subsequent year’s 1098-T.

What do these changes mean for you?

Returning students, who have received a 1098-T Form in prior years, might potentially receive a 2018 form containing information for semesters that may have already been accounted for in tax year 2017 under amounts billed.

The most common scenario results from the spring term billing as this is billed in November prior to the beginning of the semester. For example, on your 2017 1098-T Form, if Tufts billed you for your spring 2018 term in November of 2017, the information at the time the form was issued qualified as a reportable item under amounts billed (Box 2) since it happened during calendar year 2017. However, if you did not make any payments to the account prior to January 1, 2018, under the new reporting standard, that payment for spring 2018 now qualifies as a reportable item in 2018. In this scenario, you will have a form in 2017 reporting your amounts billed for spring 2018 with a blank Box 1, but you will now receive a 2018 form reporting the payment made for spring 2018 for tax year 2018. It is important that you review your 2018 tax filings with regards to QTRE you may have claimed on your 2017 tax filings.

First year students should not be impacted by these IRS changes.

Tufts cannot provide tax advice and you should consult a tax professional regarding how these changes may impact your 2018 tax filing.

How will I receive Form 1098-T?
You will receive IRS form 1098-T electronically if you meet the IRS’ reporting requirements in January. You can download your 1098-T Form at GDIT TRA Services, Inc. If you do not download your form, it will be mailed to your address on record by the end of January. If you have not done so already, please provide your Social Security Number (SSN) or Tnternational Tax ID (ITIN) to Tufts prior to the end of the calendar year. Submitting your 1098-T without a SSN or ITIN may result in a fine by the IRS. If you are an active student, you can find instructions now how to do it here. Alumni and students not currently enrolled, please contact your Registrar’s Office for instructions.

What information makes up the total in Box 1?
Box 1 contains the sum of all payments, including loans, during the calendar year that paid for qualified tuition and related expenses for the year. Per IRS guidelines, room and board are not qualified expenses and are not reported in this form.

Why is Box 2 blank on my form?
Box 2 is blank because the IRS eliminated the option of reporting amounts billed. Starting with the 2018 tax year, schools have to report in Box 1 (payments received).

Why is Box 3 checked on my form?
Box 3 shows whether your educational institution changed its reporting method for 2018. It has changed its method of reporting if the method (payments received) used for 2018 is different than the reporting method (amounts billed) for 2017. You should be aware of this change in calculating your education credits.

What is included in Box 4?
Box 4 is the sum of any adjustments made to qualified expenses reported in a prior year. If this box is blank then no adjustments were made for the year. As 2017 was reported under the amount charged (Box 2) method, reduction to tuition will be reflected here regardless of payment.

What is included in Box 5?
Box 5 is the sum of all grants and scholarships posted to your account for the calendar year.

What is included in Box 6?
Box 6 is the sum of any reductions made to grants and scholarships reported in a prior year. If this box is blank, no adjustments were made for the year. Please be aware that if your scholarship or grant was replaced by another scholarship and grant, then your Box 6 amount should be deducted from your Box 5 amount. It is possible that Tufts University replaced or swapped a scholarship or grant after it was reported on your prior year 1098-T. In such cases, this swapping may be reported in box 6.

Why did I not receive a form?
If you do not have a qualifying transaction OR if your reportable scholarships or grants are greater than your total QTRE within the tax year, then you will not receive a 1098-T.

If you are an international student that does not have an ITIN on file with Tufts then you will not get a 1098-T Form. Submitting your 1098-T without a SSN or ITIN may result in a fine by the IRS. If you are an active student, you can find instructions on how to update your SSN here. Alumni, students not currently enrolled, and students providing a TIN please contact your Registrar’s Office for instructions.

All U.S. citizens and permanent residents will be issued a 1098-T if qualifying QTRE payments were made during the calendar year, regardless of whether or not we have your SSN or ITIN.

Am I eligible for a tax credit?
Tufts University cannot provide tax advice. The IRS Home Page is an excellent source for tax information, forms, and advice. The Lifetime Learning Credit and American Opportunity Credit IRS web pages contain important information on frequently asked questions for each tax credit.

More resources about the various credits are available at the GDIT TRA Services Resource Page.