IRS Instructions for Form 8863, Line 7

posted Jan 24, 2013, 5:39 PM by Wayne Culp   [ updated Jan 24, 2013, 5:41 PM ]

If you were under age 24 at the end of 2012 and the conditions listed below apply to you, you cannot claim any part of the American opportunity credit as a refundable credit on your tax return. Instead, you can claim your allowed credit, figured in Part II, only as a nonrefundable credit to reduce your tax. 

You do not qualify for a refundable American opportunity credit if 1 (a, b, or c), 2, and 3 below apply to you.

1. You were:

a. Under age 18 at the end of 2012, or

b. Age 18 at the end of 2012 and your earned income (defined later) was less than one-half of your support (defined later), or

c. Over age 18 and under age 24 at the end of 2012 and a full-time student (defined later) and your earned income (defined later) was less than one-half of your support (defined later).


2. At least one of your parents was alive at the end of 2012.

3. You are not filing a joint return for 2012.  If you meet these conditions, check the box next to line 7, skip line 8, and enter the amount from line 7 on line 9.

If these conditions do not apply to you, complete line 8.  You can answer the following questions to determine whether you qualify for a refundable American opportunity credit.


1. Were you under 24 at the end of 2012?

·         If no, stop here; you do qualify to claim part of the allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

·         If yes, go to question 2.

2. Were you over 18 at the end of 2012?

·         If yes, go to question 3.

·         If no, go to question 4.

3. Were you a full-time student (defined later) for 2012?

·         If no, stop here; you do qualify to claim part of your allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

·         If yes, go to question 5.

4. Were you 18 at the end of 2012?

·         If yes, go to question 5.

·         If no, go to question 6.

5. Was your earned income (defined later) less than one-half of your support (defined later) for 2012?

·         If no, stop here; you do qualify to claim part of your allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

·         If yes, go to question 6.

6. Were either of your parents alive at the end of 2012?

·         If no, stop here; you do qualify to claim part of your allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

·         If yes, go to question 7.

7. Are you filing a joint return for 2012?

·         If no, you do not qualify to claim part of your allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

·         If yes, you do qualify to claim part of your allowable American opportunity credit as a refundable credit.

See:  IRS Instructions for Form 8863

Earned income. Earned income includes wages, salaries,

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