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What is the 1098-T Form?

The Tax Relief Act of 1997 requires eligible educational institutions to provide a statement to the IRS and to students who enrolled in credit courses and have a reportable transaction during each calendar year. Westminster College provides this information to the IRS electronically and to students on a 1098-T form.

Tax form 1098-T is a report of qualified education transactions.  The information in the 1098-T helps the student and/or their tax adviser determine whether they are eligible for the federal government’s American Opportunity tax credit and/or Lifetime Learning credit.  For more information on credits, go to: http://www.irs.gov/uac/Tax-Benefits-for-Education:-Information-Center

The 1098-T form will be mailed to the most recent record of home mailing address (that is the address the student designates as a legal home permanent address). The addressee is responsible to get the form to the person completing their tax return.

Westminster College sends the form to all qualified:

  • U.S. citizens
  • permanent residents
  • international students who have filed a taxpayer identification number on their student records

Westminster College does not furnish 1098-T forms if the student is a nonresident alien

What Transactions Qualify?

Qualified education expenses are:

  • tuition
  • certain related expenses required for enrollment or attendance at the institution (music fee, student teaching fee, auxiliary fee, internship fee)

The educational tax credits are based on the qualified education expenses the student pays for themselves, their spouse if file a joint return, a dependent for whom they claim an exemption on their tax return, or a third party including relatives or friends.

Per IRS guidelines, the following expenses do not qualify, even if required to pay them to attend college:

  • room and board
  • insurance
  • medical expenses
  • transportation
  • similar personal, living or family expenses

What Changed in reporting starting in 2018?

Prior to 2018, the 1098-T included a figure in Box 2 that represented the qualified tuition and related expenses (QTRE) the College billed to the student account for the calendar (tax) year. Due to a change to institutional reporting requirements under federal law, beginning with tax year 2018, the College will report in Box 1 the amount of QTRE that was paid during the year.

Qualified payments include payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses from all sources during the calendar year. 

What Information Is Reported?

On the 1098-T, Westminster College reports the following student information to the IRS:

  • name
  • taxpayer identification number
  • dollar amount of qualified transactions
  • permanent address
  • whether the student was a graduate student during the calendar year
  • whether the student was at least a half-time student during the calendar year

When is the form available?

Forms are prepared in January.  As soon as the form is ready, Westminster College will email the student instructions for downloading it from their my.westminster.  The form will also be mailed to the students permanent address no later than January 31.

The easiest way to download the 1098-T is to login to my.westminster and select the “Finances” tab, then click on “1098-T”. 

Are scholarships reported on the 1098-T Form?

All scholarships that students receive from Westminster College are reported on the 1098-T. Private scholarships from outside organizations will be reflected on the 1098-T ONLY if the funds were received by Westminster and reflected as a scholarship payment on the student’s Westminster account.

I graduated in spring but did not receive a 1098-T form. Why?

Westminster College reports payments received for qualified tuition and fees during the current tax year the payment was received and for Westminster College-administered grants and scholarships when they actually post to the account. For some students, payments for spring were received in November or December and included on the Form 1098-T for the previous tax year. 

What if I Believe Data on My Form is Incorrect?

Please keep in mind, the 1098-T form includes only qualifying transactions from the calendar year reported.  If you still believe your form is incorrect, please contact the Business Office at 724-946-7140 or businessoff@westminster.edu

Can a student and a parent both qualify for the tax credit?

No. Only one tax filer can claim the education tax benefit.

Where can I find information on the tax credits available?

You may refer to the IRS Link for FAQ’s relating to the Education Credits:  https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/individuals/education-credits-questions-and-answers

What should I do if my existing SSN or TIN is not on file with Westminster College?

Current federal tax regulations require the college to report your Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN), with other registration-related information, to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) on form 1098-T for each year that you are enrolled. Your TIN may be a Social Security Number (SSN), or an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) if you are not eligible for a SSN. To avoid penalties from the IRS, students should provide SSN’s or TINs to Westminster College so that it may be included on the form 1098-T.

If your SSN/ITIN is not registered with the college, you must submit your SSN or ITIN to Westminster College, in person at the Admissions Office. Your SSN/ITIN must be on file with the College prior to December 31 in order to have it reported on your form for that tax year

***The Business Office is unable to provide specific tax advice; these types of questions should be addressed to a tax professional. However, if you have any questions related to the information provided on the 1098-T form please contact the Business Office at 724-946-7140.