Postgraduate studies: costs of taxes and expenses


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If you do a postgraduate degree in addition to the job, nothing will change for you, just keep paying your income tax as usual. The same applies if you devote yourself entirely to the studies and work alongside.

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How much do you have to pay?

Depositing Taxation Unfortunately, how much tax you have to pay can not be generally stated - too many factors are involved, too many are the possibilities for each individual to reduce his or her tax burden by paying income-related expenses, special expenses, and so on.

Therefore, only the most important aspects can be considered.

Tax credit

If you remain under 7.664 Euro per year, you are tax-free in any case; what goes beyond it must be taxed with percentages beginning with 16,5 percent and rising with the income level. You can calculate your tax burden using the tax formulas of § 32a EStG.

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As a student, it is common for you to B. in the semester break quite a lot and then earn nothing again for months. Don't worry: If you pay wage tax in this one month, but don't exceed the basic allowance of 7.664 euros on an annual basis, you can get these taxes back as soon as the year has ended. For this purpose, an “application for income tax assessment” must be submitted to the relevant tax office of your own place of residence.

Lower taxation rate

Anyone who can not wait for the annual tax assessment because the money is needed immediately can turn to the tax office to lower the tax rate. This is possible by entering a free or up-front payment amount on the control cards. The application is to be submitted to the competent tax office of the respective place of residence.

Taxation, like social security, also includes the term “marginal employment” (mini jobs), but the employer has much more leeway here. In principle, all employment relationships can be managed on a tax card. As of April 2003, the income limit for lower mini-jobs was increased from 325 to 400 euros. There are no taxes for employees in this area of ​​earnings.

What can you do?

Advertising costs are the expenses you incur to earn, secure and maintain your wage. These include contributions to professional associations, travel expenses, application costs, childcare during working hours, etc.

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Anyone who can prove that he has spent more than 920 Euro for this purpose should do so (tax-exempt). If this value is not reached, the collection of receipts and receipts is superfluous, because the financial authority automatically automatically charges 920 Euro.

The expenses for social security (eg health insurance), tax advice (corresponding literature, programs) or donations are under the heading Special expenses. Finally, the extraordinary burdens should be mentioned. For example, Such as spending a lot of money on health care or disability, should state accordingly.

Costs of the study

All costs incurred by studying (matriculation fees, books ...) are so-called special expenses and as such are tax deductible. Proven training costs are only taken into account up to 920 euros per year. Attention: There has been a fundamental change in the jurisdiction of the highest judiciary when allocating expenses for the course to the special expenses item. According to this, these costs can also be considered as advertising costs if they arise in connection with the profession (advantage: not limited to 920 euros).

Training costs can also be claimed as advertising costs: in addition to the already undisputed expenses incurred in the generation of income (advertising or operating costs) and which, in the case of dependent employment, are lump sumed at 920 euros / year, if no additional costs can be proven, “Training costs” are also recognized.

Who is responsible for his expatriation or Further training, also a study, has been able to deduct these costs from his income tax (20.7.2006 judgment, Az. VI R 26 / 05). As a rule, the tax office is responsible for advertising costs, if these arise for the consolidation and extension of the knowledge of the already practiced profession. If a basic or advanced training is a prerequisite to be able to carry out a profession at all by the skills acquired (as a rule, this applies to every undergraduate degree), these costs are considered as special expenses.

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Advertising costs or special expenses?

You should think twice about quoting these as income-related expenses from non-independent work or applying for deduction as special expenses. Because: Special expenses can be deducted per year only up to a maximum amount of 920 Euro, with external accommodation it is maximum 1.227 Euro. However, advertising costs can be deducted indefinitely beyond the lump sum. Since this amount by teaching materials, tuition, travel costs, etc. is reached quickly, you should try as possible to make the expenses as advertising costs credible.

On July 25.7.2001, 77 (Az. VI R 00/XNUMX), the Federal Finance Court also decided that travel expenses from home to the place of training and trips home from the place of training to the place of residence of the parents represent deductible additional expenses. In a “minor” statement, tuition fees were also declared deductible. It is still unclear whether tuition fees can still be deducted as early advertising costs years after graduation, if you have long been in the profession. The tax authorities would probably reject this, but the legal process would still remain.


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  1. Levitan

    You can not say it often enough, training, continuous development, is the A & O. Therefore, super important article.

  2. Friederike Wolfger

    Hallo,
    we are in the dark about the following situation: Does a medicine study after a completed training to the physiotherapist / MFA / nurse as an advanced training? How is this situation seen for tax purposes?
    Thank you for your cooperation

    • Simone Janson

      Hallo,
      unfortunately, we can not give tax or legal advice in the individual case due to the legal situation, otherwise warnings may arise.
      Therefore, please consult a tax consultant.
      Good luck

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