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The Opportunity Maine Tax Credit reimburses student loan

payments for college graduates who live and work in Maine.

This tax credit is administered by the Maine Revenue Service

INDIVIDUALS: What year did you graduate?

Prior to 2008
You do not qualify
2008 to 2012
You qualify if:
You are Maine resident for the tax year.
You were a Maine resident while attending college/university.
You work for an employer located in Maine during the tax year.
You earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in Maine after 2007.
Note: All of your graduating credit hours earned after 2007 must have been from Maine schools.
You get:

The tax credit will offset whatever taxes you owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what you owe the State of Maine in taxes, you may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.

2013 to 2014
You qualify if:
You are Maine resident for the tax year.
You were a Maine resident while attending college/university.
You work for an employer located in Maine during the tax year.
You earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in Maine after 2007.

Note: If you transferred to a Maine school after 2012, up to 30 of your credit hours could’ve been earned at an out-of-state school. ie, you started somewhere else, then transferred to Maine after 2012.

You meet the above criteria and are deployed for military service outside of Maine.
You get:

If your degree is considered STEM, then the tax credit is refundable— meaning after being applied to your tax, you'll get a check in the mail from the State of Maine for the remaining credit.

If your degree is non-STEM, the tax credit will offset whatever taxes you owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what you owe the State of Maine in taxes, you may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.
2015
You qualify if:
You are Maine resident for the tax year.
You were a Maine resident while attending college/university.
You work in Maine during the tax year, regardless of where your employer is located (includes self-employment).
You did not work outside of Maine for more than three months of the tax year. (i.e., on temporary transfer, as a digital nomad, on excursions, etc.)

Note: If you transferred to a Maine school after 2012, up to 30 of your credit hours could've been earned at an out-of-state school. ie, you started somewhere else, then transferred to Maine after 2012.

You meet the above criteria and are deployed for military service outside of Maine.
You get:

If your degree is considered STEM, then the tax credit is refundable— meaning after being applied to your tax, you'll get a check in the mail from the State of Maine for the remaining credit.

If your degree is non-STEM, the tax credit will offset whatever taxes you owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what you owe the State of Maine in taxes, you may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.
2016+
You qualify if:
You are Maine resident for the tax year.
You work in Maine during the tax year, regardless of where your employer is located (includes self-employment).
You earned a Bachelors or Associates degree after 2007 and before 2016 from a Maine school, OR
You earned a Bachelors or Associates degree after 2015 from any accredited school in the United States,OR
You earned a Graduate Degree from a Maine school after 2015
You did not work outside of Maine for more than three months of the tax year. (i.e., on temporary transfer, as a digital nomad, on excursions, etc.)
You are deployed for military service outside of Maine.
You serve on a vessel at sea, but declare your residency when not at sea to be in Maine.
You get:

For associates degrees, a refundable tax credit, regardless of your declared major.

For Bachelors degrees in STEM fields, a refundable tax credit, for non-STEM fields, tax credits are not refundable.
For graduate degrees earned at Maine schools, tax credits are are non-refundable.
Unused, nonrefundable credits may be carried forward for up to 10 tax years.
How do I get the credit?

Participation in the program is simple.
To take advantage of the Opportunity Maine Tax Credit:

Complete & submit the Educational Opportunity Tax Credit Worksheet when you file your Maine income tax return.

» 2016 Individual Worksheet
» Prior Year Worksheets

If your question cannot be answered on this page, please contact Maine Revenue Services:
(207) 626-8475 • income.tax@maine.gov

EMPLOYERS:

You pay employee’s student loans directly to the lender. Must meet this requirement first.

What year did employee graduate?

Prior to 2008
You do not qualify
2008 to 2012
You qualify if:
Your employee is a Maine resident for the tax year.
Your employee was a Maine resident while attending college/university.
Your employee works for an employer located in Maine during the tax year.
Your employee earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in Maine after 2007.
Note: All of your employee's graduating credit hours earned after 2007 must have been from Maine schools.
Your employee gets:

The tax credit will offset whatever taxes they owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what they owe the State of Maine in taxes, they may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.

2013 to 2014
You qualify if:
Your employee is a Maine resident for the tax year.
Your employee was a Maine resident while attending college/university.
Your employee works for an employer located in Maine during the tax year.
Your employee earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in the US.
Your employee meets the above criteria and is deployed for military service outside of Maine.
Your employee gets:

If their degree is considered STEM, then the tax credit is refundable— meaning after being applied to their tax, they'll get a check in the mail from the State of Maine for the remaining credit.

If their degree is non-STEM, the tax credit will offset whatever taxes they owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what they owe the State of Maine in taxes, they may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.
2015
You qualify if:
Your employee is a Maine resident for the tax year.
Your employee was a Maine resident while attending college/university.
Your employee works in Maine during the tax year, regardless of where the employer is located.
Your employee did not work outside of Maine for more than three months of the tax year. (i.e., on temporary transfer, as a digital nomad, on excursions, etc.)
Your employee earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in the US.
Your employee meets the above criteria and is deployed for military service outside of Maine.
Your employee gets:

If their degree is considered STEM, then the tax credit is refundable— meaning after being applied to their tax, they'll get a check in the mail from the State of Maine for the remaining credit.

If their degree is non-STEM, the tax credit will offset whatever taxes they owe the State of Maine (non-refundable). If the tax credit is worth more than what they owe the State of Maine in taxes, they may use the balance over the following 10 tax years.
2016+
You qualify if:
Your employee is a Maine resident for the tax year.
Your employee works in Maine during the tax year, regardless of where the employer is located.
Your employee earned a Bachelors or Associates degree from any accredited school in the US. OR
Your employee earned a Graduate Degree from a Maine school after 2015
Your employee did not work outside of Maine for more than three months of the tax year. (i.e., on temporary transfer, as a digital nomad, on excursions, etc.)
Your employee meets the above criteria and is deployed for military service outside of Maine.
Your employee serves on a vessel at sea, but declares their residency when not at sea to be in Maine.
Your employee gets:

For associates degrees, a refundable tax credit, regardless of your declared major.

For Bachelors degrees in STEM fields, a refundable tax credit, for non-STEM fields, tax credits are not refundable.
For graduate degrees earned at Maine schools, tax credits are are non-refundable.
Unused, nonrefundable credits may be carried forward for up to 10 tax years.
How does the employer benefit?

The tax credit is designed to reimburse the minimum required monthly payments an employer makes on their employee's student loan debt.

Not only is the tax credit an incredible recruiting tool— but the employer may deduct the value of the tax credit on their state tax return. It’s a true win-win.
Why have the employer claim the refund?
If an individual claims it for themselves, that value is capped at $377 (as of 2015) per month – but for employees who graduated in 2016 or later, if the employer claims the credit, there is NO cap on the monthly value. This is a huge advantage in recruiting talented college graduates from out of state.

As the employer of a qualified Opportunity Maine tax credit applicant, simply complete and submit the Educational Opportunity Tax Credit worksheet when you file your Maine income tax return.
» 2016 Employer Worksheet

If your question cannot be answered on this page, please contact Maine Revenue Services:
(207) 626-8475 • income.tax@maine.gov

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