TAXPAYER RELIEF ACT OF 1997
American Opportunity Tax Credit
 
The American Opportunity Tax credit (formerly Hope Credit) is a tax credit that may be available to you if you pay higher education costs. You may be able to claim Hope credit for qualified tuition and related expenses paid for each eligible student in your family. An overview of the American Opportunity Tax Credit includes the following:
  • Up to $2,500 credit per eligible student
  • Available only for 4 tax years per eligible student ( including any years Hope Credit was claimed)
  • Eligible 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 in the current tax year.
  • Student must be free of any federal or state felony conviction for possessing or distributing a controlled substance as of the end of the current tax year.
Generally, the credit is allowed for tuition and fees required for enrollment or attendance at an eligible educational institution. These tuition and fees generally should have been paid in current tax year for an academic period beginning in current tax year or in the first three (3) months following the tax year.
For more information about the American Opportunity Tax credit, call the Internal Revenue Service at 1-800-TAX-1040 or visit the following pages of the IRS website:
This information is not intended as legal or tax advice. Individuals should obtain IRS Publication 970, Tax Benefits for Higher Education, or contact a tax advisor about personal income tax situations.