Tax relief for tuition fees - Q&A

Have you or will you be paying third level education fees? If so, you may be entitled to claim tax relief on fees paid.

Who can claim?

For the tax year 2007 and subsequent years, an individual can claim tax relief on fees paid for Third Level courses in respect of any individual as long as he or she has paid the qualifying fees.

What is the relief?

Relief is available at the standard rate of income tax (20%) and there is a 'cap' on the amount of relief that may be claimed. For academic years from 2007 to 2011 the cap is €5,000. For 2011/2012 the cap if €7,000.

Relief is not available in respect of:

  • any part of the tuition fees that are or will be met directly or indirectly by grants, scholarships, by an employer or otherwise.
  • administration, registration or examination fees.
  • For the year 2011 and subsequent years the first €2,000 of each claim is disregarded for relief, where any one of the students in respect of whom the claim is being made is a full-time student.
  • In the case of a claim for relief where the students concerned are studying part-time, the first €1,000 of the claim for relief is disregarded.

For the tax year 2010 and prior years the tax relief is confined to tuition fees only and does not extend to items such as registration fees or administration fees.

For the tax years 2011 and subsequent tax years, the tax relief is allowable in respect of tuition fees including the Student Contribution.

The relief is allowable per course per student per academic year. If you have paid college fees in respect of more than one individual attending college in an academic year, relief is due to you in respect of the fees paid for each person up to the maximum limit per course.

Where fees are paid in instalments and any such amounts are paid in a tax year following the year in which the academic year of the approved course commenced, then the relief for fees relating to that academic year may be granted either -

  • in the tax year during which the academic year of the approved course commenced; or
  • the tax year in which the instalment was paid.

However, relief will only be granted in respect of amounts actually paid and subject to the maximum relief available in that academic year.

How may the relief be claimed?

The relief can be claimed either on the individual's tax return at the end of the tax year or a claim can be made during a tax year for that year once the fees have been paid and the relief can be granted in the tax credit certificate.

You can apply for this relief by completing an application form. If you require a form please contact us.

Lists of Approved Colleges and Courses

Annual lists of approved Third Level colleges in the State and approved undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the State are available on the Revenue website.

Should you have any further queries or require assistance in relation to the claiming of relief in respect third level education fees paid, please contact Mark Butler or Maura Duffy..


Join our Newsletter
Be first to hear the latest news and events.