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For qualified tax professionals who want to hone and expand their skills in a specific area, the Villanova Graduate Tax Program offers a comprehensive and specialized Estate Planning Certificate, an Employee Benefits Certificate and a State and Local Taxation Certificate. 

Villanova’s tax law certificate program can be completed in-person or online, either in conjunction with the Master of Laws in Taxation (LLM) or Master of Taxation (MT) degree, or as a stand-alone certificate program. These on-campus or online law certificates follow a flexible schedule and are designed for working professionals, including both lawyers and non-lawyers. 


With the Employee Benefits certification, you’ll explore the complex network of legislation and regulation that governs different employer-provided benefits. Our Graduate Tax Program coursework is taught from the practitioner’s perspective and offers a foundation in both the tax and non-tax aspects of this field.

Required Courses:

Click on the course number to read course description.



With a certificate in estate planning, you gain the ability to resolve complex issues in wealth management and succession planning. The Villanova Graduate Tax Program offers advanced estate planning courses in wealth transfer taxes, fiduciary income taxes, rules governing charitable gifts and more so you can assist clients in developing strategies to better manage their assets. You can earn your estate planning certificate online, on campus or a combination of both.

Required Courses:

Click on the course number to read course description.



The State and Local Tax (SALT) certificate program guides you through the increasingly complex array of state and local taxation that affect today’s businesses. Through a robust and practical program of study, you will develop your ability to create solutions for businesses that further your organization’s objectives while complying with state and local taxation laws. 

Required Courses:

Click on the course number to read course description.





Tuition for students pursuing the certificate as a stand-alone program is the same per-credit amount as for LLM and MT degree students.

Given an appropriate sequencing of courses, a certificate student can finish the program in one academic year. To accommodate work-schedule and other time commitments, a certificate participant has five years within which to complete the program requirements.

Students who enter the Certificate Program may develop an interest in pursuing the full LLM or MT degree. Since admission requirements for certificate participants generally are the equivalent of those for degree candidates, in most instances the transition to a full degree candidate can be accomplished without additional application submissions. Interested students must contact the Graduate Tax Office for approval.

The certificate awarded is a certificate of achievement that signals the successful completion of the specialized course of study. Note that the certification is not an attestation as to the professional competence of the certificate holder, nor is it a formal degree. At the beginning of the semester in which coursework will be completed, the student MUST complete the Diploma Order Form.

CLE and CPE continuing education credit is available to attorneys and accountants who are certificate students who practice in the state of Pennsylvania. Online courses are not eligible for CLE or CPE credit. To request continuing education credit, please complete the CPE and CLE form and submit to at the start of each semester. 


“A certificate can help a student really focus and get a very high level of knowledge in a short amount of time that they can't get at the same pace anywhere else. Gaining this experience on the job would be hard because students are not going to get exposure to the volume of issues that we cover at Villanova."

Michael Semes, Professor of Practice




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