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ZJG
New Member

I want to know if i need to file taxes

Hello, I am a 18 year old college student that just started college in the August of 2019 in Texas. Through fafsa, i was able to get financial aid from the state ( a little over 6,000 dollars ) for my classes of a full time student. Since the classes from August to September in total came out to 4,000, i ended up keeping around 3,000 for myself which i used to buy 2 laptops and lots of food, stuff, and junk food. I also got a scholarship of 350 dollars. I recently recieved a 1040 form from my school and dont know what to do about it. Can someone help me find out if i need to start doing my taxes or something since im worried about the stimulus checks and if i qualify for the help?

5 Replies
DanaB27
Expert Alumni

I want to know if i need to file taxes

If you can be claimed as a dependent you will not be able to get the Stimulus check. Please see the requirements to be claimed as a dependent:

 

 

Who can I claim as my dependent?

 

You can claim a child, relative, friend, or fiancé (etc.) as a dependent on your 2019 taxes as long as they meet the following requirements:

Qualifying child

  • They're related to you.
  • They aren't claimed as a dependent by someone else.
  • They're a U.S. citizen, resident alien, national, or a Canadian or Mexican resident.
  • They aren’t filing a joint return with their spouse.
  • They're under the age of 19 (or 24 for full-time students).
    • No age limit for permanently and totally disabled children.
  • They lived with you for more than half the year (exceptions apply).
  • They didn't provide more than half of their own support for the year.

Qualifying relative

  • They don't have to be related to you (despite the name).
  • They aren't claimed as a dependent by someone else.
  • They're a U.S. citizen, resident alien, national, or a Canadian or Mexican resident.
  • They aren’t filing a joint return with their spouse.
  • They lived with you the entire year.
  • They made less than $4,200 in 2019.
  • You provided more than half of their financial support.

 

If you are a dependent then see this link for filing requirements: Do I need to file my own taxes if I'm a dependent?

 

 

If you are not a dependent then see this link for filing requirements: Do I need to file a federal return this year?

 

If you are not a dependent and are not required to file a return then please see this link to register for the stimulus pay:  TurboTax Stimulus Registration

 

 

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Hal_Al
Level 15

I want to know if i need to file taxes

You're not eligible for a stimulus check, because you are your parent's dependent.

 

You did not receive a "1040" from the school. You probably received a form 1098-T.  Give that form to them, so they can claim the tuition credit.

 

You do not need to file a tax return, if those scholarships were your "income".  You need more than $12,200 of income before you need to file.

 

Make your parents aware that there is a tax “loophole” available. The student reports all his scholarship, up to the amount needed to claim the American opportunity credit, as income on his return (if he even needs to file). That way, the parents  can claim the tuition credit on their return. They can do this because that much tuition was no longer paid by "tax free" scholarship.  You cannot do this if the school’s billing statement specifically shows the scholarships being applied to tuition or if the conditions of the grant are that it be used to pay for qualified expenses.

Using an example: Student has $6,000 in box 5 of the 1098-T and $4000 in box 1. At first glance he/she has $2000 of taxable income and nobody can claim the American opportunity credit. But if she treats $6000 as income, the parents can claim $4000 of qualified expenses on their return.  Since the $6000 is less than the $12,200 filing requirement, she doesn't actually have to file a tax return, but may want to do so just to "document" the income.

ZJG
New Member

I want to know if i need to file taxes

But the form does say 1040 on top and im not being claimed as a dependent.

ZJG
New Member

I want to know if i need to file taxes

Thanks for the info but im not being claimed as a dependent.

Hal_Al
Level 15

I want to know if i need to file taxes

You do NOt need to file a tax return, per IRS rules, if that scholarship was your only income.  It does not meet the $12,200 filing threshold*.

 

Colleges don't send out form 1040.  If your's sent you one they also sent you an explanation of why they sent it.  It sounds like they expect you to file a 2019 tax return to continue to be eligible for financial aid, so they thought they were being helpful with a blank form.  You're gonna have to to get that straight with them, not, here, in this forum.

 

It also sounds like your insisting that you are not  a dependent (when you almost certainly are)  has to do with qualifying with financial aid.  Again, you need to get that straight with the financial aid people.

 

That said, to report some of your scholarship, as income, enter your 1098-T, in Turbotax and follow the interview.  Computers, generally, qualify as an educational expense**, enter at books.  It sounds like you have 2000 to 3000 of income, which is not enough to have to pay any tax, but will allow you to file a tax return.

 

*The $12,200 filing threshold applies to earned income and scholarship income. If you have misc income, including interest, dividends, capital gains or taxable 529 plan distributions, there is a $1100 threshold.

 

**https://turbotax.intuit.com/tax-tips/college-and-education/can-i-deduct-my-computer-for-school-on-ta...

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