As an institution, we cannot provide you with tax advice. The following information is intended to inform students about the benefits and requirements contained in the Tax Relief Act (TRA) of 1997. It is based upon our understanding of the provisions contained in the law and should not be considered an official document. Students and/or parents should seek the advice of a tax consultant for specific questions concerning their eligibility.
TRA '97 added § 25A of the Internal Revenue (IRS) Code providing the Hope Scholarship and Lifetime Learning Credit. These provisions have created several new tax benefits for families who are saving for, or already paying for higher education expenses and loans. For additional information concerning these education credits, please review the IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Education, which may be obtained at http://www.irs.gov/publications/p970/index.html. Also, please consider familiarizing yourself with Instructions for Form 8863, the form used to claim education credits.
A 1098T Form is mailed to all students with a valid Social Security Number on file. This form will be mailed to the student's home address in January. This form will be mailed to the student’s permanent address (at the date the file is submitted to SUNY Central Administration). SUNY Central Administration contracts with a third party to print and mail the forms. They will complete this function on or before Jan. 31. The student will receive them by postal mail shortly thereafter.
In addition, students also have access to their 1098T information online, via their myRedDragon accounts. Students must sign into myRedDragon, click on the “student" tab, click on the “view 1098T” item under the Student Accounts menu at the top right of the page and will be asked to enter the desired tax year. The form not only includes a representation of the 1098T information submitted to the IRS, but an itemization, by term, of the amounts included on the 1098T.
The amount reported in Box 2 of the 1098T reflects the amount billed for qualified tuition and eligible expenses for the tax year. Grants or scholarships received for the tax year are reflected in Box 4 of Form 1098T. Publication 970 further explains the IRS regulations concerning eligible expenses and fees that qualify for these education credits.
The 2003 tax year was the first year in which all educational institutions were required to report financial information to the IRS via the 1098T Form. Final regulations developed by the IRS for the Tax Relief Act of 1997 allowed educational institutions to choose whether the financial information reported for tax credits is based upon "amounts billed" or upon "payments received." Since the IRS considers the entire system of SUNY schools a single entity, all SUNY colleges and universities must report the financial information for tax credits in the same manner. It was determined by the SUNY System Administration that all SUNY schools would be required to report "amounts billed," which appears in Box 2 of the student's 1098T Form.
Please note that SUNY Cortland bills students who advanced registered for the spring semester in December of the previous year (Spring 2012 is billed in December 2011) so your 1098T for any tax year may contain charges for a semester that occurs in the following calendar year. If so, Box 7 will be checked. In this case, students/parents are reminded that Publication 970 states "When figuring the deduction, use only the amounts you paid in 2011 for qualified education expenses."
The 2004 tax year was the first year in which educational institutions were required to report prior year adjustments to the IRS via the 1098T Form. Any adjustments made for a prior year for qualified tuition and eligible expenses that were reported on a prior year 1098T will appear in Box 3, if applicable. Any adjustments to scholarships or grants for a prior year will be reflected in Box 5, if applicable. Please note that these amounts, if any, may reduce or increase any allowable education credit you may have claimed for a prior year. If any amounts appear in Box 3 or Box 5 of your 2010 1098T Form, it is strongly advised that you seek the advice of a tax consultant for specific information concerning the handling of prior year adjustments.
For a duplicate 1098T Form, or for general information,
please call 607-753-2313.
Please note: due to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA), ONLY the student may request duplicate 1098T forms.