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ashleyy_barber
New Member

If I am filing as an independent but my parents paid my tuition for the 2020-2021 school year, do I file the 1098-T or do they?

We paid with student loans that I will be paying back eventually.
4 Replies
KrisD15
Employee Tax Expert

If I am filing as an independent but my parents paid my tuition for the 2020-2021 school year, do I file the 1098-T or do they?

Please be aware, unless you supplied more than half of your own support for 2020, you cannot file as an independent. 

I understand that you are pointing out that you are repaying the student loans, but that would only be valid had you paid for more than half your own support and this is uncommon for a student. Also, if you are counting scholarships, they don't count as you supplying your own support. 

Whoever claims the student claims the 1098-T. So if you are claiming yourself as an independent taxpayer, you would claim the 1098-T.  

 

Also, if you are eligible for the American Opportunity Tax Credit, be sure to check with your parents. The number of times (if any) that they claimed the credit on your expenses counts as you having claimed it. It can only be claimed 4 times. 

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Hal_Al
Level 15

If I am filing as an independent but my parents paid my tuition for the 2020-2021 school year, do I file the 1098-T or do they?

You do.

 The education deduction/credit goes with the student's exemption (dependency). If they claim you, they claim it.  If they are not eligible to claim you (not just whether they actually claim you), then you claim it on your return. 

 

There's a new urban myth among college students that says they can get a $1000 from the government just for filing a tax form. For most of them, they simply aren't eligible. A full time unmarried student, under age 24, even if you don't qualify as a dependent,  is only eligible for the refundable portion of the American Opportunity Credit if he supports himself by working. You cannot be supporting yourself on parental support, 529 plans or student loans & grants. You usually must have actually paid tuition, not had it paid by scholarships & grants.  It is usually best if the parent claims that credit. 

cindyh222
Level 2

If I am filing as an independent but my parents paid my tuition for the 2020-2021 school year, do I file the 1098-T or do they?

Do you know if the Am Opp Credit is claimed by the parent the first year, that the parent must claim it for years 2 through 4, or can it be switched to the student? I cannot find anywhere that describes that scenario.  Thanks!

Hal_Al
Level 15

If I am filing as an independent but my parents paid my tuition for the 2020-2021 school year, do I file the 1098-T or do they?

It can  be switched to the student.  The only requirement is that the total number of time is 4, for both of you, together.  

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