This is the sixth part of our multi-part series of blogs on tax benefits for education. Any present or former student should utilize the knowledge, experience and expertise of the tax professionals at the Thorgood Law Firm to ensure that they take advantage of all the credits and deductions that the law allows for students of higher education.
Scholarships and Fellowships
This is the fifth part of our multi-part series of blogs on tax benefits for education. Any present or former student should utilize the knowledge, experience and expertise of the tax professionals at the Thorgood Law Firm to ensure that they take advantage of all the credits and deductions that the law allows for students of higher education.
Qualified Tuition Programs (529 plans)
A Qualified Tuition Plan (QTP), also called a 529 Plan, is a program established to allow prospective students to either prepay or contribute to an account established for paying a student’s qualified education expenses at a post secondary institution. States and eligible educational institutions are entities that may establish and maintain programs that allow a student taxpayer to prepay these qualified education expenses.
The Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2016, enacted Dec. 18, 2015, extends a long list of expired tax provisions into the future. Unlike past extension legislation, Congress extended many provisions permanently. In more traditional fashion, some of the others were extended for five years, and many for two years. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimates that the total cost of the tax provisions in the bill will be $622 billion over 10 years. Without Congress extending these various provisions, millions of Americans were in danger of losing these beneficial tax breaks by 2017.
Here are some provisions for individual taxpayers that were extended by Congress for two years:
Many taxpayers overlook the long list of deductions that they may take when completing and filing their tax returns. The IRS has estimated that millions of taxpayers overpay their taxes each year mainly because they fail to avail themselves of all of the possible deductions. The tax professionals at the Thorgood Law Firm can help ensure that all taxpayers take advantage of any and all deductions that may apply to them. Here is the sixth part of our multi-part series of blogs on the most overlooked tax deductions:
COLLEGE TUITION & LOAN DEDUCTIONS
The American Opportunity Credit
Many professionals, whether lawyers, accountants or physicians, experience and endure difficult economic times before finally earning their graduate degree. On one hand, the high cost of tuition must be paid, which requires either a significant student loan or form of employment. Yet, graduate school leaves little or no time for anything other than study. After such an economically, physically, and mentally draining ordeal, is there a way to recoup some of the blood, sweat and cash exchanged for a graduate degree? Is tuition for law or graduate school a deductible educational expense?
The American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 extended the American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC) through December 31, 2017. This tax credit assists with the cost of higher education expenses such as tuition, course materials and other certain eligible fees for four years, which differs from the Hope scholarship credit because the credit may be claimed for four years instead of the two allowed under the Hope credit.