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S-Corp Education Exps for Owner


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My client is an engineer and owns his own S-Corp.  He got his bachelor's degree from a smaller school, has been working in the field for a couple years now and wants to get his PE license.  However, the school he got his bachelor's degree from doesn't qualify him to sit for the PE license since it didn't have the right accreditation.  So he has to take many of these classes again from an accredited school to qualify for the PE license.

My question is this.  I think if he were getting his bachelor's degree only, the education expenses wouldn't qualify as a business deduction because the IRS views a bachelor's degree as "training for a new profession" regardless if you're already in the profession.  But an MBA in the field WOULD qualify as education expenses of the S-Corp because they "maintain & improve skills in your current profession."  

So here's the tricky part.  Since my client already has the bachelor's degree, and he's only taking some of the undergraduate classes to qualify for the PE license, you think that's enough separation to qualify for the "maintain & improve skills in your current profession" and take the deduction through the business?  Or am I really reaching here?

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On 10/27/2019 at 8:25 PM, BulldogTom said:

He can't work as a PE without the education, and so the education gives him a new skill.

I'm not so sure.  He can't get the license as a PE without proper accreditation.  What he is getting is the paperwork to support the PE, not new education or new skills.  Happens all the time; a friend of mine (so far back I wasn't even doing tax work yet) had her nursing license from an accredited school but NOT a bachelor's degree.  Needed the BS to get into a master's program. Ended up having to take classes being taught by people SHE had taught, that for her were SO far beneath her skill level it was pathetic.  All to get the %$#@ piece of paper to get into the program she needed.  It was totally stupid.  Could be the same here, where the client won't learn a lick of new information or any new skills - just getting the %$#@ piece of paper that permits him to get the license.

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