Educational tax credits

The Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997 created two tax credits to help families meet the cost of a college education:· The American Opportunity Tax Credit and the Lifetime Learning Credit.· The American Opportunity Credit, formerly known as the Hope Tax Credit,· may offers a tax credit up to $2,500 per student.· The Lifetime Learning Credit may offer a tax credit of up to $2000.

In general, qualified expenses for the education tax credits include tuition and required fees for the enrollment or attendance at eligible post-secondary educational institutions. The expenses paid during the tax year must be for: an academic period that begins in the same tax year or an academic period that begins in the first three months of the following tax year.

You may be able to deduct interest you actually paid on your student loans and may reduce your overall tax liability. Since tax credits have income limits and many other restrictions, it is advised to talk with a tax consultant or visit the IRS web site for information and tips.

If you disagree with the amounts listed on your 1098-T, contact the COCC's Admission and Records Office at 541-383-7500.· If you did not receive a copy of your 1098-T, you may print a copy by logging into your Bobcat Web Account·and click the '1098-T Notification' link.

Form 1098-T FAQ's

What is Form 1098-T?

1098-T forms will be generated for students who have a valid tax identification number on file with COCC and who have paid tuition and fee expenses in the tax year in question. For individuals, this is your social security number. If you do not have a social security number on file with COCC, a 1098-T form will not automatically be generated for you.  COCC is required to provide information on the 1098-T regarding the amount of tuition and mandatory fees charged to the student; scholarships and grants received for the student by the College; and whether the student was enrolled at least-half time at some point during the tax year.  COCC is not required to furnish a statement for non-credit courses, nonresident alien students, students whose qualified tuition and related expenses are entirely waived or paid entirely with scholarships or grants, and students who do not provide a valid SSN. Please note: employees of COCC cannot provide guidance on how to use these forms to prepare your taxes. If you are unsure on how these forms should be used, please consult a tax professional or the IRS.  If you are a tax professional and have questions about the 1098-T, please consult the IRS.

Can I provide my SSN later and receive a 1098-T?

You can provide COCC your SSN on a W-9S form.  The College will then send a 1098-T to the student and the IRS.  Please contact COCC at 541-383-7500 or welcome@cocc.edu  for further instructions.  

How can I find out if I am eligible for a tax benefit?

Read The Higher Education Federal Tax Benefits Guide and IRS Publication 970, contact the IRS at (800) 829-1040, or contact a tax advisor for information on how to determine if you qualify for one of the tax benefits.

I think I should have received a 1098-T, but did not get one. What should I do?

1098-T tax forms will be mailed by the end of January each year for the preceding calendar year. An electronic copy will be available on your Bobcat Web Account. If you have questions about your 1098-T, please contact COCC at 541-383-7500 or welcome@cocc.edu.  Please include the following in your email: name, ID#, current address and a phone number where we can reach you.

Why is box 1 blank?

Box 1, "Payments Received for Qualified Tuition and Related Expenses", is blank because COCC reports in box 2, "Amounts billed for qualified tuition and related expenses", instead. The IRS provides the option for schools to report either "Payments received" in box 1, or "Amounts billed" in box 2, but not both. Central Oregon Community College elects to use box 2 as a service to our students. 

How did the College calculate the figures included in Form 1098-T box 2 - Amounts paid for qualified tuition and related expenses?

The figure in box 2, "Amounts billed for qualified tuition and related expenses", includes the total amount billed during the preceding calendar year for terms that started in that year or the first three months of the current year if the billing and registration occurred in the current year.

What amounts appear in box 4 - Adjustment made for a prior year?

This box shows any adjustment made to prior year qualified tuition and related expenses that were reported in the preceding year. This amount may reduce any allowable education credit you may claim.

How did the college out what figures to include in Form 1098-T box 5 - Scholarship or grants?

The figure in box 4, "Scholarships or grants", includes scholarships, grants, and payments made by a third party (not your parents or other individual) during the calendar year being reported.

What amounts appear in box 6 - Adjustments to scholarships or grants for a prior year?

This box includes any adjustments/reductions that occurred in the preceding year for scholarships, grants, or third-party deferrals originally disbursed or paid in the prior year.

I did not keep information on my payments and student loans. Where can I get copies?

This information is available in your Bobcat Web Account.

I was not a half time student for the whole year, why did you check box 8 - Check if at least half-time student?

The College checks that box if you were half-time or more for at least one term that began during the year. This information is important in determining eligibility for the Hope Credit.

How can I view and get a copy of my 1098-T?

You can view and print a copy of your 1098-T in your Bobcat Web Account.  Click on Student Services & Financial Aid, then 1098-T Notification.

Since I received Form 1098-T from the College, will I qualify for one of these tax benefits?

Not necessarily. Read The Higher Education Federal Tax Benefits Guide and IRS Publication 970, contact the IRS at (800) 829-1040, or contact a tax advisor for information on how to determine if you qualify for one of the tax benefits. The College is not required to furnish a statement for non-credit courses, nonresident alien students, students whose qualified tuition and related expenses are entirely waived or paid entirely with scholarships or grants, and students who do not provide a valid SSN. Please contact a tax professional for advice on 1098-T's.

In this Section