Extending the Earned Income Tax Credit to Students: A Comparison of Aid Policies

Brief

Extending the Earned Income Tax Credit to Students: A Comparison of Aid Policies

Abstract

Postsecondary education can be a critical step on the path toward economic independence, but many low-income students who are independent for tax purposes face tremendous financial difficulties when trying to complete postsecondary school. Extending the Economic Security Project’s cost-of-living refund would provide $41 billion in benefits annually to postsecondary undergraduate and graduate students. Extending the maximum credit benefit to low-income independent students regardless of earnings would allow postsecondary education to be treated on par with working. Unlike extending Pell benefits, the entire benefit could be accessed by all eligible students and would not be subject to complicated interactions with other types of student aid.

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