1098T Tax Form Frequently Asked Questions

Q:  What is a 1098T Form?

A:  The 1098T form is a statement that universities are required to issue to students.  It provides the total dollar amount paid by the student for qualified tuition and fees in a single tax year. 

Q:  When will I receive my 1098T Form and how do I get it?

A:  1098-T Tuition Statements are available online in SPIRE usually in early January. You may view your 1098-T form online through your SPIRE access. Once in SPIRE, select Consent for 1098T. If you have already consented to online distribution, simply click on the View 1098T option. You may view and/or print your statement from this menu option.

Q:  Why don’t the numbers on the 1098T Form match the amount I paid to UMass during the year?

A:  The amount in Box 1 only represents the amount paid for qualified tuition and fees only; it does not include payment made for room, meal plan, health fees, health insurance, fines and other fees not related to course enrollment. 

Q:  Does that 1098T tax form include payments made for books?

A:  No, the amount reported in Box 1 does not include payments for books, nor does it include payments for Class Materials Fees, which is considered book fees.  You should consult with your tax advisor to determine if payments for books, equipment or fees should be considered when determining eligibility for educational tax credits.

Q.  What semesters are included on my 1098T tax form?

A:  Box 1 on the 1098T tax form includes payments made during the calendar year for qualified tuition and fees; it is not based on when classes were taken or fees billed to the student account.  Your tuition bill will show the dates that payments were posted to your account and will help you determine the semesters that are included.

Q:  I graduated in May 2019, do I have a 1098T tax form for this year?

A:  Some May 2019 graduates will not be issued a 1098T tax form; students who paid their final Spring 2019 semester bill before December 31, 2018 will not have a 1098T for 2019.

Q:  My accountant says that the University must provide me with a 1098T form.

A:  Consistent with IRS Regulations, UMass Amherst is not required to provide a 1098-T tax form to a student with the following exception circumstances:

  • Students whose qualified educational expenses were entirely waived or paid with scholarships.
  • Students whose qualified education expenses were entirely paid by a third party, including a student’s employer or government entity.
  • Students who do not have a valid permanent address on file at the University.

To update your address, select the Personal Portfolio menu once logged in to SPIRE.

  • Students who do not have a valid Social Security Number (SSN) or Tax Identification Number (TIN) on file with the University. 

To file a SSN or TIN, contact the appropriate Registrar's Office.

  • Students who are non-resident aliens, i.e., not tax residents of the United States.

Q:  Why isn’t Box 2 filled out on my 1098T form like it was in prior years?

A:  The IRS has changed the reporting requirements for the 1098T tax form beginning with tax year 2018.  In prior years, universities were required to report qualified tuition and fees that were billed during the year.  Universities are now required to report in Box 1 the amount paid for qualified tuition and fees during the year.

Q:  What are qualified tuition and fees?

A:  Qualified tuition and related expenses include:    

        Tuition                                                            Service Fee     

        Technology Fee                                             Graduate Senate Tax   

         Student Activities Fee                                  New Student Enrollment Fee

         Honors College Fee                                      Commencement Fee      

         ISOM Fee                                                       Graduate Entering Fee    

         Engineering Fee                                            CPE Registration Fee

         Lab Fees                                                         Course Fees Room

Room, meal plan, health fees, fines, and other fees not related to course enrollment are NOT considered qualified educational expenses.

Q:  My SSN is wrong on my 1098T form.  Can I have a new one sent to me?

A:  If your SSN or TIN number is incorrect, you will need to complete Tax Form W-9S and deliver it in person or by fax to the Bursar’s Office to request that an updated 1098T form be issued.  The updated form will be available online through your SPIRE access.