Hello, I notice that a lot of women on TheOdysseyOnline.com are full or part-time students, or taking educational classes online. So, I'm here with some helpful information about what education expenses are tax deductible this tax season.
If you or your spouse are currently a student, or if you can claim a dependent who is, here are a few ways to reduce your taxable income:
1. Take the Tuition and Fees Deduction
The tuition and fees deduction for qualified education expenses can reduce your taxable income by up to $4,000, even if you don't itemize your deductions. You likely qualify unless you're above the IRS's income threshold, ($65k as of this year) or if you are married and file separately.
How much you can deduct will be based on your modified adjusted gross income, also known as your "MAGI." If you use a top brand tax software, they can help determine if you're eligible and calculate how much you can deduct.
2. Deduct Courses You Take for An Employer or Government Agency
If you're taking courses because your employer or a government agency requires it, you may also consider taking a deduction, although you'll need to itemize your deductions on Schedule A. You can only deduct the amount that exceeds 2% of your adjusted gross income.
So if 2% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) is $1000, and you paid $1500 for courses, you can claim $500 as a deduction.
You can claim the deduction whether you pay using personal funds or student loans.
Also, as a student you may even receive a service code from your school to use for a discount or even free download of tax software.
3. Deduct Courses You Take to "Maintain or Improve Skills" Needed for Your Work
You may be able to deduct courses you take that maintain or improve skills needed for your work.
For example: If you are a freelance web designer, you can deduct courses you take to keep up with the latest changes in web development, design, and SEO. If you study finance or economics, then something like a WSJ subscription might be a potential deduction. This could also include online courses, or premium site memberships.
OK, unfortunately it's already tax season, so for anyone taking classes or online courses relevant to their income, I hope that's helpful info! If you have questions about specifics, be sure to consult a qualified professional or check out the vast resources online through sites like TurboTax, H&R Block, or of course, the IRS! (blech!)