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anusarns
New Member

Are International students with resident alien for tax purposes eligible for American Opportunity or Lifetime learning Tax Credit?

Hi, I have been in the US since August 2013 and been holding F1 visa since then. I have become a resident alien for tax purposes in July 2018. I did my masters degree from 2013-2015 then started my PhD in September 2015. This year 2019, I am still a PhD student as I plan to graduate end of this year. My question is am I eligible for American Opportunity or Lifetime learning Tax Credit since I am currently a resident alien but I was only considered as resident alien for half a year in 2018 (July to December 2018). If yes, can I file for American Opportunity credit since I started my PhD in September 2015 and now it is 2019 so I am not sure if I have already completed the first 4 years of postsecondary education. If not, I guess I can still file for Lifetime Learning Tax credit right? Unless I am not eligible at all due to being a resident alien only half a year in 2018.

Thank you for your advice! 

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3 Replies
KarenJ
Intuit Alumni

Are International students with resident alien for tax purposes eligible for American Opportunity or Lifetime learning Tax Credit?

I believe you became a resident as of January 1, 2018.  For the F1 visa ,  you count 5 year OR part years (2013,2014, 2015, 2016, 2017).  As a US resident in 2018, you may qualify for the Lifetime Learning Credit.  The American Opportunity Credit is only available for the first 4 years of college as an undergraduate.

Please see additional information on the Lifetime Learning Credit and the requirements to claim the credit.

Please also see information from the IRS as to how to count your F1 years of nonresidency.

https://turbotax.intuit.com/tax-tips/college-and-education/what-is-the-lifetime-learning-tax-credit/...

https://www.irs.gov/individuals/international-taxpayers/alien-residency-examples



anusarns
New Member

Are International students with resident alien for tax purposes eligible for American Opportunity or Lifetime learning Tax Credit?

Thank you so much for your response! So as an international student with resident alien for tax purposes status, I am eligible for the Lifetime Learning Credit right?
KarenJ
Intuit Alumni

Are International students with resident alien for tax purposes eligible for American Opportunity or Lifetime learning Tax Credit?

Yes, that is correct.
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