Written answers

Tuesday, 4 April 2006

9:00 pm

Photo of Michael LowryMichael Lowry (Tipperary North, Independent)
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Question 245: To ask the Minister for Finance the terms and conditions when a person may qualify for tax relief for further education; if a person (details supplied) in County Tipperary will be considered eligible for such relief; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [12971/06]

Photo of Brian CowenBrian Cowen (Minister, Department of Finance; Laois-Offaly, Fianna Fail)
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The position is that tax relief is available in respect of qualifying fees paid by an individual to an approved college in respect of certain full-time or part-time undergraduate courses and postgraduate courses. The current maximum amount of relief per course per academic year in respect of third level fees is €5,000 at the standard rate of tax.

Tax relief is also available in respect of fees paid for training courses in the area of information technology and foreign languages. Tax relief is available at the standard rate of income tax where the tuition fees for an approved course are more than €315. Relief is not available where the tuition fees are less than €315. The current maximum amount of relief is €1,270 per course at the standard rate of tax. Tuition fees paid by an individual on his or her own behalf or on behalf of a spouse, child or person for whom the individual is the legal guardian qualify for tax relief. Relief may be claimed at the end of the tax year or, for PAYE taxpayers, the relief may be claimed by way of amending the tax credit certificate during the tax year when the fees have been paid. Tax relief is available for tuition fees only. It is not available in respect of administration or examination fees or in respect of any part of tuition fees that are met directly or indirectly by grants, scholarships, by an employer or otherwise.

The information leaflet, IT31, in respect of tax relief on tuition fees is available on the Revenue website at www.revenue.ie. Annual lists of approved third level colleges in the State, approved undergraduate and postgraduate courses in the State, and approved course providers and courses for information technology and foreign languages are also available on the Revenue website. The application form for claiming the relief is contained in the information leaflet.

In regard to the specific case raised by the Deputy, I am informed by the Revenue Commissioners that they have not received any claim for relief for tuition fees from the taxpayer to date. They have, however, sent the person a copy of the information leaflet.


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