New york state college tuition deduction


G

Geoff

My 19 year old son is paying his own college tuition.
He has no significant income or deductions.

Apparently claiming him as a dependent is worth more to me
than a Federal deduction would be worth to him; so I am
claiming him as a dependent.

On the NYS form he can claim a deduction anyhow, not that he
would be paying much taxes anyhow. But when I run it
through TaxCut, it says he can't take a deduction because he
did not take an itemized Fed deduction.

Is that right? It is pretty confusing, and I just want to
be sure. Thanks.
 
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M

Mark Bole

Geoff said:
My 19 year old son is paying his own college tuition.
He has no significant income or deductions.

Apparently claiming him as a dependent is worth more to me
than a Federal deduction would be worth to him; so I am
claiming him as a dependent.

On the NYS form he can claim a deduction anyhow, not that he
would be paying much taxes anyhow. But when I run it
through TaxCut, it says he can't take a deduction because he
did not take an itemized Fed deduction.

Is that right? It is pretty confusing, and I just want to
be sure. Thanks.
Yes, it is confusing. There are personal exemption
deductions (for yourself and your spouse if married),
dependent exemption deductions, and either standard or
itemized deductions for various types of personal
expenditures. (Not to mention AMT, but that's another
issue). It sounds like you are mixing some of these up. The
NYS situation is not familiar to me but in general some
states may require you to take standard or itemized
deductions just as on the federal return, and others don't.

Whether or not your son is your dependent is not a matter of
choice, he either is or isn't based on the facts and
circumstances. For example, his income doesn't matter when
figuring where his support, only what it cost and who paid
for it. You say he is paying his own tuition but has no
significant income, that tells me he is paying for it with
some combination of savings, gifts, or loans. If he paid
more than half of his own support, he cannot be your
dependent.

You either need to spend a lot more time reading the IRS
publications or seeing a human tax professional. You
mention TaxCut, I believe with that product you have the
option of moving from a self-service approach to an assisted
approach at some additional cost but you may also get enough
help from other replies here to complete the tax return
yourself.

-Mark Bole
 
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B

Benjamin Yazersky CPA

Geoff said:
My 19 year old son is paying his own college tuition.
He has no significant income or deductions.

Apparently claiming him as a dependent is worth more to me
than a Federal deduction would be worth to him; so I am
claiming him as a dependent.

On the NYS form he can claim a deduction anyhow, not that he
would be paying much taxes anyhow. But when I run it
through TaxCut, it says he can't take a deduction because he
did not take an itemized Fed deduction.

Is that right? It is pretty confusing, and I just want to
be sure. Thanks.
taxes are supposed to be confusing <G>

I think the answer is that you have to crunch the numbers.
It can be advantageous, but not necessarily in each & every
case.

___________________________________
<<< Benjamin Yazersky, CPA [NJ & NY] >>>
-----> real address on hobokeni or hobokenx <-----
 
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V

Victor Roberts

Geoff said:
My 19 year old son is paying his own college tuition.
He has no significant income or deductions.

Apparently claiming him as a dependent is worth more to me
than a Federal deduction would be worth to him; so I am
claiming him as a dependent.

On the NYS form he can claim a deduction anyhow, not that he
would be paying much taxes anyhow. But when I run it
through TaxCut, it says he can't take a deduction because he
did not take an itemized Fed deduction.

Is that right? It is pretty confusing, and I just want to
be sure. Thanks.
I'm not a tax pro, and it's been a few years since I have
dealt with the NY college tuition credit for my own kids,
but you can get more information from New York Publication
10W, available here:
http://www.tax.state.ny.us/pdf/publications/income/pub10w_1006.pdf.

Based on a quick read of this eligible students may claim
either a tax credit or an itemized deduction - HOWEVER,
neither seems to be available to anyone who is claimed as a
dependent on another person's NY State tax return.

If you son is your dependent and if you had paid the tuition
you would be eligible for the credit or itemized deduction.
 
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G

Geoff

I'm not a tax pro, and it's been a few years since I have
dealt with the NY college tuition credit for my own kids,
but you can get more information from New York Publication
10W, available here:
http://www.tax.state.ny.us/pdf/publications/income/pub10w_1006.pdf.

Based on a quick read of this eligible students may claim
either a tax credit or an itemized deduction - HOWEVER,
neither seems to be available to anyone who is claimed as a
dependent on another person's NY State tax return.

If you son is your dependent and if you had paid the tuition
you would be eligible for the credit or itemized deduction.
Thank you! It says that I can claim the state credit, even
though he paid the tuition. It is only $400, but still...
 
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V

Victor Roberts

Thank you! It says that I can claim the state credit, even
though he paid the tuition. It is only $400, but still...
It seems that question 4 in the Q&A says that you can also
choose to claim the itemized deduction though your son paid
the tuition. So, you seem to have the option of choosing
either the credit or the deduction, which ever produces the
greater reduction in your state income tax.
 
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