Returns claiming the American Opportunity Tax Credit Face Delays says IRS
The IRS is delaying processing hairstylist returns claiming the American Opportunity credit until at least the middle of February 2013.
If you use Form 8863, Education Credits, the Internal Revenue Service will not process your return immediately. The delay is needed to modify some programming to help accurately process changes to the form.
Many beauty professionals continue their education, and look forward to the financial help the credit provides. Like many Americans, tax time is financial hard, and overly complicated for the beauty professional.
If you haven’t filed your income tax and will be using form 8863 to claim the American Opportunity Tax Credit, you may want to consider a work around so your return can be processed in a timely manner. The delay doesn’t affect the Lifetime Learning Credit, so if you are using form 8863 for the Lifetime Learning Credit, you’re return will not be delayed.
American Opportunity Tax Credit Work Around
Disclaimer: I am not a tax professional. You should contact one to see if this approach is best for your specific needs. Follow this advice at your own risk.
- Do not claim the credit on your return if you haven’t filed yet.
- File your return without requesting the American Opportunity Credit.
- File an Amended Return after your return is processed by the IRS.
By removing the claim for the credit, your return will avoid the delay. This is going to cut your wait time by at least 3 weeks. It will also give you the opportunity to see if there are any change or addition to the form. If after updating programming to accurately process the form, the IRS decides an additional piece of information is needed from the tax payer, you will have to wait for the government to send you the request. Although unlikely, it is possible, the delay will be drawn out longer than the mid February estimate.
Filing an amended return to claim a credit is common practice but amended returns take 4 to 6 weeks to process by the IRS. See File an Amended Return at IRS.GOV.
Tax Return Delayed by American Opportunity Credit
Hairstylists and other beauty industry professional planning to take advantage of the American Opportunity Tax Credit will have their returns delayed in processing by the IRS. It doesn’t matter if you do your own taxes or have a tax professional file them for you. Your return will be delayed if you are claiming this specific educational tax credit.