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Deducting Education Expenses

Summer is winding down and back-to-school time is approaching. With the looming costs of supplies, clothing, technology and school fees coming at parents of young students, adults may benefit from deducting education expenses associated with their own educational pursuits.

Who is eligible for deducting education expenses?

Work-related education expenses paid during the year are tax deductible if you are:

  • A self-employed individual
  • An Armed Forces reservist
  • A qualified performing artist
  • A fee-based state or local government official
  • A disabled individual with impairment-related education expenses

What educational expenses are eligible?

To be deductible, the IRS specifies that expenses, such as tuition, books, supplies, lab fees, and similar items, certain transportation and travel costs, other educational expenses, must be for education that

  1. Maintains or improves skills needed in your present work or
  2. Your employer or the law requires to keep your present salary, status or job
  3. Incur during temporary (1 year or less) absence from your work (must relate to maintain or improve skills needed in your present work, and you must return to the same general type of work after absence)

Exceptions include programs that will qualify you for a new trade or business or that you need to meet the minimal educational requirements of your present trade or business.

If you have further questions about deducting education expenses and how these should be reported, please reach out to the team at Anderson, Adkins & Company so that we can ensure the proper filing and maximum deductions. For our team, tax planning in the benefit of our clients gears up this time of year, just as the school year does!

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