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Author: TMFPMarti Big funky green star, 20000 posts Home Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 120801  
Subject: Re: education deduction for neice? Date: 3/11/2006 4:57 PM
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My neice is going to college, lives in the sorority and will be claiming herself on her taxes. However, we pay her tuition and education expenses. Can I take the deduction for these expenses or does it have to be on her return do she can claim independent student status?

"Independent student status" is not a tax term, so I have no idea what's involved with that. Qualified education expenses can be claimed on the student's return or on the return claiming the student's personal exemption. Since your niece is no one's dependent, only she can claim the expenses. She can, however, claim the expenses you paid. See Pub 970.

We also pay the sorority bill, part of which is expense for her living there (on campus) and part of which is the sorority fee. Is any of this considered an education expense?

Room and board can be a qualified expense when determining the taxability of 527 and Coverdell distributions. It's not a deductible expense, nor is it the basis for a credit.

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