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I am currently enrolled in courses outside of school that are for IT certifications.

Question: Can the tuition and the certification vouchers be written off? If so, what is the best way to go about it? Can I also write off the commute to and from class?

Thanks!

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  • Is this a certificate earned through an accredited US college or University? Or is it from an accrediting company? Jul 23 '15 at 10:12
  • @mhoran_psprep It is from GMU, so yes it is accredited.
    – oxy
    Jul 23 '15 at 10:20
  • By "written off", you really mean "deducted", right? Jul 23 '15 at 17:16
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There are a number of federal tax deductions and credits available for education expenses. They are too numerous to describe here, but the place to get full details is IRS Pub 970. Note that many, but not all, of them require that you be enrolled in a degree program; since this does not seem to be the case for you, you would not be eligible for those programs.

None of them is as simple / generous as "deduct the full amount of your tuition with no limits". Also note that there are restrictions on using more than one of these deductions or credits in any given tax year.

You might pay special attention to Chapter 12, "Business Deduction for Work-Related Education". In particular, this program allows you to deduct transportation expenses under some conditions, which does not seem to be the case for the other programs. But also note carefully the restrictions. In particular, "Education that is part of a program of study that will qualify you for a new trade or business is not qualifying work-related education." So if you are not already working in the field of IT, you may not be eligible for this deduction.

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  • To add to Nate's nice summary, if practicing your new profession requires a license of any kind, then the cost of acquiring the license for the first time is not deductible, but subsequent renewals are deductible. Jul 24 '15 at 2:45

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