Georgia Qualified Education Expense Credit
Georgia allows a credit for amounts paid by the taxpayer to a Student Scholarship Organization, operating pursuant to a Chapter 2A of Title 20, which uses the contribution for tuition and fees for a qualified school or program. The credit is allowed on a first come, first served basis. The aggregate amount of the tax credit allowed to all taxpayers cannot exceed $58 million per tax year. The taxpayer must add back to Georgia taxable income that part of any federal charitable contribution deduction taken on a federal return for which a credit is allowed. Taxpayers must request preapproval to claim this credit on on Form IT-QEE-TP1. For more information, refer to O.C.G.A. § 48-7-29.16 and Revenue Regulation 560-7-8-.47.
In order to claim this credit, the amount must have been preapproved by the Department of Revenue.
• The contribution must be preapproved by the end of the calendar year. Also, the contribution must be made within 60 days of the date of the preapproval notice or by the end of the calendar year in which it was preapproved, whichever is earlier.
• The taxpayer must add back to Georgia taxable income the amount of any federal charitable contribution deduction taken on a federal return for which a Georgia qualified education expense credit is allowed.
• The tax credit shall not be allowed if the taxpayer designates the taxpayer’s qualified education expense for a particular individual.
• The student scholarship organization must be on the Department of Education’s website before preapproval is submitted through GTC.
Definitions for purposes of this credit:
(1) “Eligible student” means a student who is a Georgia resident who, immediately prior to receiving a scholarship or tuition grant under Code Section 20-2A-2 and enrolling in a qualified school or program, was enrolled in and attended for at least six weeks a Georgia secondary or primary public school or who is eligible to enroll in a qualified first grade, kindergarten program, or pre-kindergarten program; provided, however, that if a student is deemed an eligible student pursuant to O.C.G.A. § 20-2A-1(1), he or she shall continue to qualify as such until he or she graduates, reaches the age of 20, or returns to a public school, whichever occurs first; and provided, further, that the enrollment and six-week public school attendance requirements shall be waived in the case of a student who, based on the school attendance zone of his or her primary residence, is or would be assigned to a public school that the Office of Student Achievement determines to be a low-performing school, who is the subject of officially documented cases of school based physical violence or student related verbal abuse threatening physical harm, or who was enrolled in a home study program meeting the requirements of subsection (c) of Code Section 20-2-690 for at least one year immediately prior to receiving a scholarship or tuition grant under Code Section 20-2A-2.
(2) “Qualified school or program” means a nonpublic pre-kindergarten program, primary school or secondary school that:
(A) Is accredited or in the process of becoming accredited by one or more entities listed in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (6) of Code Section 20-3-519; and
(B) is located in this state, adheres to the provisions of the federal Civil Rights of 1964, and satisfies the requirements prescribed by law for private schools in this state.
Note: This is NOT an education credit taxpayers can claim for educational expenses paid to a qualified educational institution for items such as tuition and fees, books, etc.
For additional information pertaining to the qualifications for this credit, please refer to the link below:
2016 Qualified Education Expense Tax Credit (Individual taxpayers that electronically file their tax return do not have to submit Form IT-QEE-SSO1. Form IT-QEE-SSO1 shall be maintained by the taxpayer and made available upon request by the Commissioner.)
See Georgia Form IT-QEE-TP2 for more information and qualifications- Expense Credit Computation
See Georgia Form IT-QEE-SS01-Letter of Confirmation
Individual Taxpayers Credit Limits:
An individual taxpayer is allowed a credit for qualified education expenses as follows:
(1) In the case of a single individual or a head of household, the actual amount expended or $1,000.00 per tax year, whichever is less; or
(2) In the case of married couple filing a joint return, the actual amount expended or $2,500.00 per tax year, whichever is less; or
(3) In the case of a married couple filing a separate return, the actual amount expended or $1,250.00 per tax year, whichever is less.
For an individual taxpayer the credit is further limited and may not exceed the taxpayer’s income tax liability.
The amount of the credit that exceeds the taxpayer’s income tax liability can be used against the next succeeding five years’ tax liability.