What are the rules and details about deducting
Medical and Dental Expenses
on your 1040 form?
The medical & dental deduction comes after line 37 – 7 – 8b so it won’t count to lower your MAGI Income for Covered CA.
Your medical expenses may save you money at tax time, but a few key rules apply. Here are some tax tips to help you determine if you can deduct medical and dental expenses on your tax return:
- Itemize. You can only claim your medical expenses that you paid for in the prior year if you itemize deductions on your federal tax return.
- Income. Include all qualified medical costs that you paid for during the year, however, you only realize a tax benefit when your total amount is more than 10 percent of your adjusted gross income.
- Temporary Threshold for Age 65. If you or your spouse is age 65 or older, then it’s 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income. This exception applies through Dec. 31, 2016.
- Qualifying Expenses. You can include most medical and dental costs that you paid for yourself, your spouse and your dependents including:
- The costs of diagnosing, treating, easing or preventing disease.
- The costs you pay for prescription drugs and insulin.
- The costs you pay for insurance premiums for policies that cover medical care qualify.
- Some long-term care insurance costs.
- Travel Costs Count. You may be able to deduct travel costs you pay for medical care. This includes costs such as public transportation, ambulance service, tolls and parking fees. If you use your car, you can deduct either the actual costs or the standard mileage rate for medical travel. The rate is 23 cents per mile for 2015.
- No Double Benefit. You can’t claim a tax deduction for medical expenses paid with funds from your Health Savings Accounts or Flexible Spending Arrangements. Amounts paid with funds from those plans are usually tax-free.
- Use the Tool. Use the Interactive Tax Assistant tool on IRS.gov to see if you can deduct your medical expenses. It can answer many of your questions on a wide range of tax topics including the health care law.
- Exceptions and special rules apply. Costs reimbursed by insurance or other sources normally do not qualify for a deduction. For more examples of costs you can and can’t deduct, see
- IRS Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses.
Additional IRS Resources:
- Schedule A (Form 1040), Itemized Deductions
- Publication 969, Health Savings Accounts and Other Tax-Favored Health Plans
- IRC Section 213
See also Health Savings Accounts
IRC 213 a what medical expenses are deductible
What Are Medical Expenses?
What Expenses Can You Include This Year?
How Much of the Expenses Can You Deduct?
Whose Medical Expenses Can You Include?
What Medical Expenses Are Includible?
What Expenses Aren’t Includible?
How Do You Treat Reimbursements?
How Do You Figure and Report the Deduction on Your Tax Return?
Sale of Medical Equipment or Property
Damages for Personal Injuries
Impairment-Related Work Expenses
Health Insurance Costs for Self-Employed Persons
Health Coverage Tax Credit
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Related pages in MAGI – FAQs – What counts as Income? Section
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