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What are qualified education expenses?


Updated for tax year 2017

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Jennifer S. - TaxAct Tax AnalystNot all expenses are created equal

The definition of qualified education expenses varies. It depends on the tax credit or other benefits you want to use.

Most education benefits allow expenses for tuition, fees, books, supplies, and equipment for an eligible student enrolled at an eligible educational institution. They generally also cover any additional activity fees required to attend the school.

On the flip side, the following expenses are not considered qualified education expenses:

  • room and board
  • insurance
  • medical expenses (including student health fees)
  • transportation
  • personal, living or family expenses
  • expenses for sports, games, hobbies or non-credit courses (unless required for participation in a particular academic course)

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