Submit Job-Related Graduate Education Certification Forms by Feb 7

February 04, 2020
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If you are enrolled in graduate-level studies–non-degree course(s) or a degree program–and do not have a Job-Related Graduate Education Certification form on your student account record, keep reading... 

According to IRS guidelines, tuition exemption benefits for graduate-level studies (course numbers 4000 & above) are exempt from taxation up to the federal limit of $5,250 in a calendar year. The value of tuition exemption benefits above the federal limit of $5,250 is treated as taxable imputed income, and taxes will be withheld from your paycheck. The University will spread the tax liability of Tuition Exemption benefits for spring  classes over the February through May pay periods. 

The one exception to this IRS guideline is for graduate-level studies certified as “job-related,” per IRS-defined criteria.

For guidelines on whether you qualify for the Job- Related tax exemption, and instructions on how to certify, go to our Job-related Graduate Education Certification page.

What You Need to Know About Job-Related Graduate Education Certification Forms

Forms must be submitted Friday, February 7, 2020, to ensure the tax exemption is applied to your student account for:

  • Non-Degree Programs – Forms must be certified and submitted each term with your Tuition Exemption Benefits eligibility form to the SFS office
  • Degree Programs – Forms must only be certified once (unless you change your degree program, or job); however, a copy of the certified form must be submitted each term with your Tuition Exemption Benefits eligibility form to the SFS office. 

Important: If you do not submit a Job-Related Graduate Education Certification Form demonstrating these courses are related to your work at the University, your paycheck will be taxed for the tuition value of courses exceeding the annual federal limit.

To Submit Forms

Email: tuitionexemption-students@columbia.edu or drop off signed form(s): Morningside, 205 Kent Hall, (212) 854-4400; CUIMC, 1-141 Black Building 

If you have questions about your student account, contact SFS