The Tax Relief Act of 1997 allows certain taxpayers who pay qualified tuition and related expenses to an eligible institution, such as Ball State University, to claim an American Opportunity Tax Credit (formerly Hope Scholarship Credit) or a Lifetime Learning Credit against their federal income tax liability. These two tax credits took effect in 1998 to help families reduce out-of-pocket expenses for tuition and certain expenses paid to postsecondary institutions that participate in federal student aid programs. The information is designed to provide a brief overview of the tax law and is not intended to be used for tax planning purposes.

To receive either tax credit, you must account for and document the amount you have paid for tuition and expenses (IRS Form 8863) and file it with your federal income tax return.You do not file Form 1098-T with your tax return.

Ball State provides Form 1098-T to document your enrollment and whether or not you are a graduate student. The University is also required to provide you with financial information regarding qualified charges for tuition and related expenses, and scholarships and grants that were actually paid in the current tax year on the Form 1098-T. The Office of Bursar and Loan Administration will be able to answer questions regarding Form 1098-T but is not qualified to offer tax advice.

Ball State is partnering with ECSI Corporation this year to produce our Forms 1098-T, including the electronic option.  ECSI's website is secure, and ECSI will not share your private information.  ECSI also provides a 1098-T hotline help number: 866-428-1098

In addition to consulting a tax professional to discuss your personal situation, you may wish to contact the IRS at 1-800-829-1040 or for further information.

* Form 1098-T

Tax Relief Act FAQs