Understanding School Supply Tax Credits in Minnesota

By Published On: August 31, 2023Categories: Tax News

As the back-to-school season approaches, families across Minnesota are preparing to equip their children with the necessary tools for a successful academic year. To help alleviate the financial burden of purchasing school supplies, Minnesota offers a school supply tax credit. This credit is designed to assist families in affording essential educational materials and ensuring that students have the resources they need to excel in their studies.

What K-12 tax benefits does Minnesota offer?

Two Minnesota tax benefits help families pay their child’s education expenses: The K-12 Education Credit and the K-12 Education Subtraction. Both benefits reduce your state tax and could provide you a larger refund when filing your state income tax return. 

Do I qualify for these tax benefits?

To qualify for either the credit or subtraction, both of these must be true:

  • You have a qualifying child attending kindergarten through 12th grade at a public, private, or qualified home school
  • You purchased qualified education-related expenses in 2023 to assist with the child’s education

However, separate income requirements apply for the credit and subtraction:

  • K-12 Education Subtraction: There are no income limits for the subtraction.
  • K-12 Education Credit: Your household income (taxable and nontaxable income) must be below the levels shown in the table. You must file a Minnesota return to claim the credit, even if you are not required to file. If you are married, you and your spouse must file a joint return to qualify.

What education-related expenses qualify? 

Many expenses for educational instruction or materials may qualify, including:

  • Paper and notebooks
  • Pens and pencils
  • Nonreligious textbooks
  • Rental or purchases of educational equipment, including musical instruments
  • Computer hardware (including hotspots, modems, and routers) and educational software (up to $200 for the subtraction and $200 for the credit)
  • After-school tutoring and educational summer camps taught by a qualified instructor
  • Internet service or access fees do not qualify.

Claiming the School Supply Tax Credit

To claim the school supply tax credit in Minnesota, eligible families generally need to complete the necessary paperwork when filing their state income tax return. This might involve filling out specific forms or sections that pertain to the school supply credit. The credit amount is then deducted from the total state tax owed.

The school supply tax credit in Minnesota serves as an invaluable support system for families striving to provide their children with quality education. By easing the financial burden associated with purchasing essential school supplies, the state aims to ensure that all students have the tools they need to succeed academically. Families are encouraged to explore the eligibility criteria, keep track of changes in legislation, and take advantage of this beneficial program to set their children on a path to success. If you have questions on your specific tax situation, the team at SDK is here to help. Reach out to us today at 612-332-5500 or send us an email at info@sdkcpa.com.