There’s a saying that advancing one’s education pays off sooner or later. Thanks to 2009’s stimulus act, getting a bachelors degree pays before you even graduate. It made it possible to get a tax refund for going to college, and that refund can be thousands of dollars. Included in this are the online college courses so many students are participating in.

This new program was dubbed the American Opportunity Credit. It’s an expansion of what was previously the Hope Credit. If one attended any kind of college this last year, whether it’s brick and mortar or online, one can even apply for it this April. If you need more information about college grants, look on the internet.

According to the IRS, there are some significant differences between the Hope and Opportunity credits. The Opportunity Credit is open to a lot more applicants (or their parents). While it is currently only good for 2009 and 2010, it can be used not only against tuitions and fees, but also college-related expenses such as text books and related items. It can even be applied to people who already get a tax refund, none of which the Hope could.

Originally the limits on this credit were for individuals who made less than $48,000 and married couples who filed joint returns less than $96,000. The credit is now open to $80,000 and $160,000 or less. If one’s income(s) are $90,000 or $180,000 respectively, one can also apply, but they won’t get the maximum amounts. It cuts off when one exceeds those numbers.

What one gets is a 100% refund for the first $2,000 in tuition, fees and/or costs related items. For the next $2,000, one can claim an additional 25%. After the $4,000 mark it goes down to zero. So if the total costs are $6,000; one gets a 100% refund for the first $2000, 25% of the next $2,000 (or $500) and nothing for the last $2,000. That’s a total of a $2,500 the following April.

One has to be careful about the “cost related” bit though. Buying a computer does not automatically make it refundable. On the other hand, if a class or school forces one to buy a laptop then it’s an item that can be claimed. There is an abundance of information about online college degree on the web.

Another interesting thing that’s different from the Hope is the Opportunity could turn into a refund. This could happen even if the filer is will get a tax refund without the credit. The difference is the cap is a bit tighter. The maximum refund is only $1,000 instead of the full $2,500.

It should be noted the Opportunity credit is good for 2009 and 2010, although some informed sources are saying President Obama is talking about extending it. It is only good for the first two years of college. For the third year and beyond, one should look for what’s called the Lifetime Learning credit. For further clarification, consult a tax expert, a college financial aid officer or the IRS website.

Financial reasons, as much as flexibility, are considered by students when they take Uk marriage visa online degree education material. Exploring this refund, as well as potential monies prior to starting school, such as Uk marriage visa Pell grants and scholarship, may enable more students to attend and further their careers than ever before.

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