HSS building from the 2cd floor looking down on a group of students 

Frequently Asked Questions
IRS Form 1098-T

This page is provided by the
Financial Aid Office for
information only.

Forms can be obtained through
Corsair Connect > QuickLinks
If you have additional
questions - please contact 
the Bursars Office at

Please be advised that the 
information provided in this

web page is NOT tax advice.
 It is offered only as general
information for SMC students

and their families. 



What is a 1098-T anyway?
Form 1098-T:  Tuition Payments Statement is the information that colleges and universities are required to issue for the purpose of determining a student's eligibility for the Hope and Lifetime Learning education tax credits. Please click on the following link to see what the form looks like:

Who gets a 1098-T Form?

Only students who have a Social Security Number (SSN) and also have any out of pocket payment for eligible fees will get a 1098-T form. International (F1 Visa) students do not receive a 1098-T form.

What are eligible fees reported on the 1098-T form?

The eligible fees which will be reported to the IRS are:
1-      Enrollment Fee
2-      Non-Resident Tuition
3-      Non-Resident Surcharge
4-      Class Fee
5-      Refund Charge for Class Drops
6-      Material Fee
How can I get a copy of my 1098-T?
Please go to the Corsair Connect and select 1098T from the “SMC Quick Links” menu on the left.
Why didn't I receive a 1098-T from SMC?
If you did not have any out of pocket payment, like Cash, Checks, Credit Card payment,
you will not get a 1098-T form.
Did you send a copy of this form to the IRS?
Yes.  The Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, requires institutions to file 1098-T information to assist taxpayers and the Internal Revenue Service in determining eligibility for the HOPE and Lifetime Learning education tax credits.
What am I supposed to do with the 1098-T form?
Keep it for your records.  Since SMC sends your 1098-T information to the IRS, there is no need to attach a copy of the form to your tax return.  The information contained in the 1098-T will help you to determine if you may claim the HOPE or the Lifetime Learning education tax credits.
The Social Security Number (SSN) on my form is incorrect.  What should I do?
Reporting to the IRS depends primarily on your SSN, so it is very important for you to have the correct information on file with the College.  

The name on my form is incorrect.  What should I do?
Please go to the Admissions Office of SMC for any corrections to your SSN.
What does an amount in Box 1 mean?
Box 1 ("Payments received for qualified tuition and related expenses") of your 1098-T displays the net amount of payments received during the tax year (January - December) that were required as a condition of your enrollment and attendance.  To "qualify," payments must relate to an academic period for which fees are due and payable during the tax year, and for which instruction begins no later than March of the following tax year.  The amount is calculated by summing the "qualified" portions of registration and course materials fees, less any refunds or reductions of these fees due to enrollment changes.
Why are Boxes 2, 3, 9, and 10 blank?
These boxes are blank because the information is not applicable to SMC as the filer of your 1098-T.
What does an amount in Box 4 mean?
Box 4 ("Adjustments made for a prior year") shows any refunds during the current year for payments of "qualified tuition and related expenses" reported on a 1098-T for a prior tax year.  For example, if you paid winter or spring 2014 registration fees when due in December 2013, "qualified tuition" for that quarter would have been reported on your 1098-T for 2013.  If you subsequently received a refund of winter or Spring 2014 registration fees in January 2014, the amount refunded would be reported in Box 4 for tax year 2014.  Refunds may be the result of changing from full-time to part-time study, nonresident to resident classification, or cancellation/withdrawal.
What does an amount in Box 5 mean?
Box 5 ("Scholarships or grants") shows the net amount of certain forms of educational assistance that were received or applied to your student account during the tax year (January - December), regardless of the quarter for which the funds originally were intended. 
Note that the amount in Box 5 may include fee payments, like BOGG fees, and other credits, as well as checks.  Any subsequent adjustments or reductions to educational assistance that occurred in the same tax year are summed into the amount.  The net amount is sent to the IRS.
What does an amount in Box 6 mean?
Box 6 ("Adjustments to Scholarships or grants for a prior year") shows an amount if "scholarships or grants" that were reported on a 1098-T for a prior year were subsequently adjusted or reduced in the current tax year. 
What does the check mark in Box 7 mean?
Box 7, if checked, indicates that "payments received" in Box 1 include Pre-paid fees.
"Pre-paid" fees are those paid during the tax year for a quarter beginning in the first 3 months of the following tax year. At SMC, winter session or spring semester registration fees fit into these categories, because fees are due and payable in December of one tax year for instruction beginning in January of the following tax year. 

What does the check mark in Box 8 mean?
Box 8, if checked, indicates that you were considered to be "enrolled at least half-time" for one or more semester during the tax year.  At SMC, "at least half-time" means that you were enrolled in 6 or more units for any Spring or Fall semester, or 3 or more units for any Winter or Summer sessions.
In order to claim the Hope Credit, a student must be enrolled at least half-time in a program that leads to a degree, certificate, or other recognized educational credential for at least one academic period beginning during the tax year.  (See "Who is an Eligible Student" in Chapter 1 of IRS Publication 970)
Note that a check mark does not guarantee your ability to claim the Hope Credit, as additional eligibility requirements must be met.  Please consult with a qualified tax expert on this subject. 

I have other questions not addressed on this homepage, what should I do?
Please contact the Bursar’s Office at the number printed on your 1098-T form and we will be happy to answer your questions about the data on the 1098-T form.  However, no tax advice will be given at the Bursar’s Office and it is the responsibility of the student to consult with a qualified tax adviser.