Can I include the spring tuition in 2018 even if not shown in the 2018 1098-T?

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    I paid for a child’s Spring 2018 tuition in December 2017. This was correctly recorded in the 2017 1098-T he received. However, owing to income limitations, I was not eligible to take any education tax credits.

    The 2018 1098-T he received this year shows, in Box 5, the scholarship received for the Spring 2018 semester, but does not include, in Box 1, the tuition paid in December 2017 towards it. (Box 1 includes some other amounts paid in 2018.) This is as it should be.

    In 2017, my income was too high to qualify for any education credits. However, circumstances have changed and I (in tax year 2018) am now eligible for all the education credits, including AOTC. As I did NOT take any education credits in 2017, can I now include the 2018 Spring tuition paid in 2017 (and included in the 2017 1098-T) as a part of the 2018 tuition costs (even though not included in the 2018 1098-T? Is this allowed? Will any discrepancy between the reported 1098-T and my addition cause a query from the IRS?

    Thanks in advance for any guidance.

    Kaye Thomas

    Unfortunately, the law clearly states that credit is allowed only for amounts paid during the taxable year you are claiming the credit. An amount paid in 2017 cannot be used to claim credit in 2018, even if it is paid for a 2018 semester. See “Prepaid Expenses” on page 4 of the instructions for Form 8863.


    grandparents contribute Vanguard 529 to grand children set up by their father. Can we deduct from Income Tax or their father can deduct from income tax. We all live in Pennsylvania.Please advise. Thank you


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