Ronald Z. Thompson - Page 5
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An individual who, through education, improves his skills in
an existing trade or business may also become qualified for a new
trade or business. Educational expenses incurred to qualify for
a new trade or business are nondeductible even if the individual
does not engage in the new activity. See sec. 1.162-5(b)(3)(ii)
Example (2), Income Tax Regs. The mere capacity to engage in a
new trade or business is sufficient to disqualify the expenses
for the deduction. Weiszmann v. Commissioner, 52 T.C. 1106, 1111
(1969) affd. per curiam 443 F.2d 29 (9th Cir. 1971); see sec.
1.162-5(b)(3), Income Tax Regs.
The Court agrees with petitioner’s contention that his
training improved his aeronautical engineering skills. By taking
flight lessons petitioner likely improved his ability to evaluate
cockpit ergonomics and design and troubleshoot future flight
concepts. The training also likely improved his skills in
testing and evaluating aircraft flight systems software.
However, the education undertaken by petitioner was a course of
study that led to his receipt of commercial pilot certificates.
As a result, this Court must decide whether petitioner became
qualified for new trade or business by attaining these
Even though petitioner did not intend to work as a
commercial pilot, the commercial pilot certificates qualified him
to be employed as a pilot-in-command of an aircraft for single
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Last modified: November 10, 2007