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Tax Credits and Deductions

Education Tax Credits: The AOTC and LLC

It’s tax time, which means it’s time to claim education tax credits you may be eligible for. Unfortunately, a lot of tax software programs don’t provide good instructions for doing so, so it’s a good idea to pull up the instructions for Form 8863 and review them before filing. The American Opportunity Tax Credit is the more valuable of the…

How Much Should You Save for College?

A client’s former advisor told her that she should save $800,000 per child for college. None of my initial reactions to that were appropriate for a client meeting, but how much should you save for college is an important question for a lot of families so let’s dig into that. First, why do advisors tell people that they need to…

What Do You Do With Form 1098-T and 1099-Q?

Form 1098-T is a tuition statement that students receive from their college. It serves two primary purposes: Documenting eligibility to claim the American Opportunity Tax Credit or Lifetime Learning Credit Documenting that the student was enrolled in a college and that 529 withdrawals up to net cost of attendance are therefore qualified Form 1098-T isn’t filed with your taxes; instead,…

Unemployment on the FAFSA

Generally the FAFSA does not count untaxed social benefits as income. Untaxed Social Security, SSI, foster care benefits and welfare payments are excluded from income for the FAFSA, although disability payments and worker’s comp– which are insurance benefits– are added back. Normally unemployment income is taxable so this exclusion would not apply. However, the American Rescue Plan made 2020 unemployment…

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