As a student, you can deduct many costs for your studies from your tax return. We show you which costs you can deduct and how you can enter them in the Taxfix app.
First or second degree?
The question of whether your studies are primary or secondary education is important - because both are treated differently for tax purposes:
- You are in your primary education as long as you have not acquired another training or study qualification between your time at school and your training. If, for example, you start your Bachelor's degree directly after school, this is considered primal training. In this case, you may deduct a maximum of 6,000 euros of your training costs as special expenses. However, they only have an effect for tax purposes if you also had taxable income in the same year.
- On the other hand, if you are in your secondary education, you may deduct the full amount of your education costs as income-related expenses. This applies, for example, to a Master's degree. In this case, a so-called loss carry-forward is also possible - that is, you can take your losses or costs with you into the following year. This is advantageous if you had no or only little taxable income during your studies.
A special regulation applies to dual studies:
If you study at a university with integrated practical work in a company, i.e. you earn money during your studies and are employed, then you may deduct all your training costs in full from your taxes as income-related expenses. This also applies, for example, to a dual Bachelor's degree programme.
Note: Primary education and first studies are not the same thing:
Even though for many people a primary education is the same as first studies, the terms are not the same for tax purposes.
Secondary education is any education that is completed after the first vocational qualification (training, study). This means that your first degree (e.g. Bachelor's degree, diploma) can also count as secondary education under certain circumstances - for example, if you have already completed a professional training at a Berufsschule beforehand. If this applies to you, you can fully deduct your expenses as a student as income-related expenses.
Sounds complicated? The good news for you: The Taxfix app automatically recognises whether your expenses for your studies are deductible as special expenses or as income-related expenses and takes them into account when calculating your tax. We explain how to enter the costs below.
Which costs can I deduct?
Expenses for studying that you can deduct from your taxes include, for example:
- Tuition fees
- Semester fees
- Course and examination fees
- Travel costs
- Technical literature & stationery
- Student loan interest
- Travel, board and lodging costs for study trips
- Home Office
How to enter your study costs in the Taxfix app
In the Taxfix app, enter that you studied in the category "Intro questions". If you earned money while you were studying, you can also enter that here.
If you worked part-time, you can enter your salary in the "Income" category. Simply enter the data from your annual payslip here. You can enter all expenses that you incurred as part of your part-time job, internship or working student activity in the "Work" category. This category opens if you have earned taxable income.
Finally, you can enter expenses that you incurred in the course of your studies in the category "Education".