Deducting Job-Related Education Expenses

You may be able to deduct any job-related education expenses you paid during the year, as an itemized deduction on Schedule A. These expenses are also subject to the 2% of AGI limitation.

To be deductible, the education expenses must be job-related, and they must be for education that is:

• Required by your employer or by law, to keep your present salary, status, or job.
• Required to maintain or improve the skills needed in your present work.

Although the above requirements may be met, no deduction will be allowed on Schedule A, if the expense was incurred to:

• Meet the minimum education requirements for your current job or trade.
• Enable you to participate in a program of study that can qualify you for a new job or trade, even if you have no plans to enter that job or trade.

If you are not allowed to deduct your job-related education expenses on Schedule A because of the reasons above, you may however, be able to deduct them as a lifetime learning credit, if all the conditions are met.

Deductible job-related education expenses include the following:

• Cost of tuition, books, lab fees, supplies and similar items.
• Certain transportation and travel costs, including driving from work to school.
• Transportation from home to school, if you are regularly employed and go to school on a temporary basis.
• Other educational expenses, such as costs of research and typing a paper.
• Cost of travel, meals, and lodging for overnight travel, to obtain qualified education.

You must keep proper records to prove your education expenses; otherwise the IRS will disallow them in the case of an audit.

The primary objective of this article is to empower taxpayers to learn to do their own taxes. For detailed information on how to deduct your employee business expenses, grab yourself a copy of “Doing Your Own Taxes is as Easy as 1, 2, 3,” ($6.98) on

Milton G Boothe is an IRS Enrolled Agent with over twenty years of tax and financial accounting experience, including several years at PricewaterhouseCoopers. He is also a British certified Chartered Accountant. He is currently employed in private tax practices where he helps people resolve their tax problems, minimize their taxes, and routinely represents the interests of taxpayers before the Internal Revenue Service. As an Enrolled Agent (EA) Boothe is a federally-authorized tax practitioner who has technical expertise in the field of taxation and who is empowered by the U.S. Department of the Treasury to represent taxpayers before all administrative levels of the IRS for audits, collections, and appeals.
Milton G Boothe is also the author of several tax publications, wherein he encourages people to empower themselves by learning to do their own taxes.

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