Tax deduction / deductible study tuition fee expenses. Study tuition costs are expenses made for education to obtain a (better) position on the labour market or to maintain current work-related knowledge.
The following costs can be deductible: tuition / application fee, enrolment fee, books and other literature and costs of exams. Costs of a language course can be deductible but only under certain strict conditions. Study costs have to be a financial burden for the person following the studies, meaning the fees may not be paid through a gift and/or scholarship(s).
Study tuition expenses are deductible if paid from own funds or from borrowed funds, in the latter case we would recommend to prepare a qualifying loan agreement. If there is an entitlement to so called ‘studiefinanciering’, the rules are different.
Education costs can only be deductible as far as these exceed EUR 250 per year. The maximum deductible amount per year is EUR 15.000, so some careful planning could be interesting when following an expensive study course such as an MBA.
This maximum however does not apply for taxpayers who are not older than 30 years. For determining their maximum deductible amount the ‘standard study period’ is applicable. The standard study period is the period to be designated as such by the taxpayer of no more than 5 years in which the taxpayer is not older than 30 years during which the taxpayer spends most of his/her time with study/ education as a consequence of which a full time employment is not possible.
Study costs are a personal deduction and can be used by any (qualifying) Dutch tax resident with a taxable income in the Netherlands. The deduction can also be allocated to your fiscal partner.
If there is no taxable income, the personal deduction can be saved and used in subsequent years, although a tax resident must file a personal income tax return for the relevant year in which the study costs have been paid in order to claim back the deduction.
- Check if all related tax deduction conditions are met;
- Review if all paperwork is present to be able to proof qualification for the tax deduction;
- Prepare the personal income tax returns for the relevant tax years and deduct the study expenses in the relevant tax years. Please note that during the year 2019, the year 2014 is the oldest tax year a personal income tax return can be filed for.
Please note that in the tax plan 2017 an abolishing of the deduction of study tuition expenses was taken up. However for now the abolishment has been withdrawn, in any case study tuition expenses made in the years 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, 2018 and 2019 are tax deductible under the rules as described above (the threshold and maximum are subject to possible changes in tax legislation).