My wife took a course in 2016 for advancing her technical skills. She got a job after that course. Can I claim the tuition fees as tax deduction?
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My wife took a course in 2016 for advancing her technical skills. She got a job after that course. Can I claim the tuition fees as tax deduction?

 
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New Member

My wife took a course in 2016 for advancing her technical skills. She got a job after that course. Can I claim the tuition fees as tax deduction?

The answer is....it depends.  There are two tests you need to apply: First test: The expense maintains or improves skills that are required in your employment or your current trade or business. Treas. Reg. § 1.162-5(a)(1). Examples include negotiation seminars for a salesperson, employment law or employee benefit seminars for HR managers, and finance courses for bookkeepers. Second test: The expense meets the express requirements of your employer or of applicable law or regulations, imposed as a condition to the retention of your employment, status, or rate of pay. Treas. Reg. § 1.162-5(a)(2).

I am not an accountant or a tax lawyer so my advice can be taken with a grain of salt but this is what I read. Ultimately, it comes down to whether or not the IRS will question the legitimacy of what you are deducting.  You could ultimately claim that any educational expense is necessary to obtain or retain employment so if you can explain the relationship between the training and the job or even better have something in writing from the employer explaining it, then you should be golden.
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My wife took a course in 2016 for advancing her technical skills. She got a job after that course. Can I claim the tuition fees as tax deduction?

Short answer: yes if "advancing her technical skills" was in the same line of work she has worked in before. No, if it's a new field. Even if it's a new field, it will qualify for the tuition credit, just not as job expenses.

Continuing Education.
 If the courses were taken at a recognized college or vocational school (educational institutions eligible to participate in the student aid programs administered by the Department of Education),  you can take either the Lifetime Learning Credit or the Tuition & fees deduction (but not the Hope  or American Opportunity credits) If that doesn't apply, you can deduct as a job expense or continuing education, an itemized deduction subject to the 2% of AGI threshold. 2% rule explained: (2% rule explained: <a rel="nofollow" target="_blank" href="https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/2902781-what-is-the-2-rule">https://ttlc.intuit.com/questions/2902...>)
In TurboTax enter at:
Federal Taxes Tab
Deductions & Credits
-Scroll down to:
--Employment Expenses
---Job related expense
You can also deduct the mileage if you go directly from your work site (but not from home) to the school. You cannot deduct the mileage from school back to home, unless the schooling is considered temporary (expected to last less than 1 year and actually does last less than 1 year) and you drove to school from work.
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