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Northwestern University

Tax Information

In accordance with the Tax Reform Act of 1986, scholarships and grants received during a specific calendar year that exceed qualified educational expenses are considered taxable income. In these cases, taxes are not withheld from the scholarship or grant funding, so you may be responsible for paying the appropriate taxes upon filing your tax return.

We provide some preliminary information for you here to help you get started, but it is important for you to consult with your tax preparer and carefully review the information available on the IRS website (including IRS Publication 970). This helpful IRS publication provides definitions, exceptions, a worksheet, and other important considerations.

When calculating your tax liability, you may calculate any general scholarship or grant aid as first applying to qualified educational expenses (i.e., tuition, mandatory fees, and required books and supplies). Student loans and work-study are not subject to these tax requirements and should not be included in your calculation.

You should carefully review and maintain your records, including invoice and award information. If you no longer have copies of your award information for the calendar year you are researching, you can access your award information online via CAESAR (Main Menu > Student Financial Services > View NU Financial Aid History). Please note that your 1098-T is intended to help determine eligibility for tax credits and will not be helpful to you in determining your tax liability.

Beyond your tax liabilities, there may be tax benefits you may want to consider as well. For information regarding tax benefits for education, we encourage you to review the information available on the Student Financial Services website.

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