Tuition Benefits for Dependent Children

Penn offers generous tuition benefits—not just for you, but for your family as well. Dependent children of eligible faculty and staff can receive undergraduate tuition benefits at Penn or an approved school other than Penn.

ON THIS PAGE:

Eligibility

Faculty or Staff Member

Regular, full-time faculty and staff and limited service staff who have completed three years of service are eligible for dependent tuition assistance. If your three-year anniversary date falls on or before the cut-off date of a given academic term, you can receive tuition benefits for your dependent children during that term. Otherwise, the dependent child tuition benefit can begin in the following term. You must remain in your position after the cut-off date for a given term in order to maintain the benefit for that term. See the tuition policies for additional information (Dependent Children Attending Penn, Dependent Children Attending a School Other Than Penn).

 

Dependent Child

The child must meet all of the following conditions in order to be eligible for Penn’s tuition benefits.

  1. Meet Penn’s definition of dependency for at least three years. The faculty or staff member must provide at least 50% or more of the child’s support, beyond the gross benefit, throughout the time the benefit is received and for any previous three years during the child’s lifetime. These don’t have to be consecutive years.
  2. Be your biological child, stepchild (who is the biological or legally adopted child of your spouse), legally adopted child, biological or legally adopted child of your same-sex domestic partner registered with the University, or your child under official court-ordered legal guardianship. This relationship must have existed for at least three years.
  3. Be enrolled in an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree program (trade certificate or diploma programs are not covered) at an approved school.

 

Coverage

Dependent Children Attending Penn

The tuition benefit for dependent children attending Penn is 75% of Penn’s line item of undergraduate tuition and technology fee. The rates for the 2015-2016 academic year are shown below.

  • 75% of $43,838 for undergraduate tuition: $32,878.50
  • 75% of $766 for technology fee: $574.50
  • Total benefit: $33,453

The total is broken down into two semester payments. If your dependent’s tuition and technology fee are less than this, then the benefit would be 75% of the total of those two fees. The benefit is for a maximum of four years (defined as eight semesters) or the attainment of the Bachelor’s degree, whichever comes first. You may use the benefit in the summer, but this will count as a term used against the maximum number offered under the benefit.

The benefit may be taxable to you as income, either at the federal and/or state level. Click here to review how we handle taxability.

 

The University does not offer graduate tuition benefits for dependents unless you were grandfathered under the prior plan in 1997. If you believe your start date in an eligible position was prior to June 30, 1997, please email our office to check your eligibility.

Dependent Children Attending an Approved School Other Than Penn

The tuition benefit for dependents attending a school other than Penn is a maximum of 40% of Penn’s line item of undergraduate tuition. The undergraduate tuition rate for the 2015-2016 academic year is shown below.

  • 40% of $43,838 for undergraduate tuition: $17,535.20
  • Maximum benefit: $17,535.20

The benefit covers the other school’s line item of tuition. It does not cover any other fees or charges. The schedule of benefit payments to the other school is determined by how the school manages their sessions (semesters, trimesters or quarters). The maximum benefit payment for Fall 2015 and Spring 2016 for a school on a semester schedule would be $8,767.60 per semester or the other school’s line item of tuition, whichever is less. The benefit is available for a maximum of four academic years (defined as eight semesters, 12 trimesters, or 16 quarters) or the attainment of the Bachelor’s degree, whichever comes first. You may use the benefit in the summer, but this will count as a term used against the maximum number offered under the benefit.

The benefit may be taxable to you as income, either at the federal and/or state level. Click here to review how we handle taxability.

Preparing for the Benefit

It’s important that you read and understand in full the tuition benefit policies and additional information provided on this site. You’ll be able to request payment for a term once the tuition benefit system opens to that term. The dates the system opens to requests for a term are listed in the tuition policies (Dependent Children Attending Penn, Dependent Children Attending a School Other Than Penn).

You won’t need to submit anything to the Tuition Benefit Office until your child has enrolled in a school and received an itemized term bill. As your child is applying to schools, you may wish to review the list of approved schools to make sure they are already on the list. If a school is not on the list, you can follow the process below to request that our office review the school for inclusion.

Approved Schools

Approved schools are those that meet certain accreditation standards and offer an Associate’s or Bachelor’s degree program. You can view the list of schools already on the list through the online tuition benefit management system by clicking on “Dependent Direct Grant School List” from the left-hand menu. This will bring up an alphabetical list of schools. Jump to a letter using the top filter and scroll through a specific letter using the “page” buttons on the bottom of the box.

If you don’t see a particular school listed, you can request that the Tuition Benefit Office review it for inclusion by either clicking on the “Not Listed” button and filling out the form, or emailing our office with the name and contact information for the school.

 

Using the Benefit

Learn more about using your tuition benefit for dependent children.

Scholarships and Financial Aid

Most college financial aid offices will factor your benefit into your child’s financial aid package. The way in which this is done, however, is dependent upon the financial aid package formulas and calculations specific to each school. Check with the financial aid office at your child’s school to inquire about this.

Some kinds of financial aid could affect your tuition benefit. Loans you or your child may receive do not affect your benefit. However, if your child receives any scholarships or grants and they exceed the line-item tuition charge when added to the tuition benefit, we will ask you to have the school verify that those grants or scholarships are not restricted to the tuition charge. If they are restricted to tuition only (no other fees), then Penn’s tuition benefit or the scholarships/grants will need to be lowered to the amount of the tuition charge. If the other scholarships/grants are unrestricted and can go towards any charge on the bill, then most likely no adjustment to the benefit would be needed.

For more information, please see the tuition policies (Dependent Children Attending Penn, Dependent Children Attending a School Other Than Penn).

Taxability of the Benefit

Dependent child tuition benefits may be taxable at the federal and/or state level. For more information, please review our page on taxability of tuition benefits and click on the information that pertains to you and your child.