Go Back Up

Medical Expenses Deductions Checklist

Compliance • April 17, 2014 at 12:00 PM • Written by: PeopleKeep Team

If you or your clients paid a lot for health care in the last year, many of those expenses could qualify as a deduction from your taxable income on Form 1040, Schedule A. Use this checklist to determine which medical expenses you can take as a deduction on your income tax return.

Medical Expense Deduction Tips

  • You have to itemize deductions to claim these expenses.

  • Medical expenses are only deductible to the extent that they exceed 10% of your Adjusted Gross Income (AGI). If your AGI is $75,000, for example, the first $7,500 of qualified expenses (10% of $75,000) don’t really count for deduction purposes.

  • However, if you're older than 65 years old there is a temporary exemption to the 10% rate. If you or your spouse are 65 years or older, or turned 65 during the tax year, you are allowed to deduct unreimbursed medical care expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. The threshold remains at 7.5% of AGI for those taxpayers until Dec. 31, 2016.

Medical Expenses Deductions Checklist

The IRS offers a list for qualified medical expenses. We've included a partial list of qualified medical expenses below. For the complete list, see IRS Publication 502.

  • Acupuncture

  • Air conditioner necessary for relief from allergies or other respiratory problems (less any increase in the value of your home resulting from the installation of air conditioning)

  • Alcoholism treatment, including inpatient treatment, meals, and lodging at a therapeutic center for alcohol addiction

  • Artificial limbs

  • Artificial teeth

  • Birth control pills prescribed by a doctor

  • Braille books and magazines used by a visually impaired person

  • Contact lenses, including equipment and materials for using contacts

  • Doctor or physician expenses

  • Drug addiction treatment, including in-patient treatment, meals, and lodging at a therapeutic center for drug addiction

  • Elastic hosiery to treat blood circulation problems

  • Exercise program if a doctor has recommended it as treatment for a specific condition

  • Eye surgery, such as Lasik or a similar procedure, when it is not for cosmetic purposes only

  • Guide dog or other animal used by a visually-impaired, hearing-impaired, or otherwise physically disabled person

  • Hospital care

  • Household help for nursing care services only

  • Insurance premiums for medical care coverage

  • Laboratory fees

  • Lead-based paint removal, including the cost of removing lead-based paints from surfaces when a child has lead poisoning or was previously diagnosed with lead poisoning. (Does not include the cost of repainting.)

  • Legal fees paid to authorize treatment for mental illness

  • Lifetime care advance payments

  • Lodging expenses while away from home to receive medical care in a hospital or medical facility

  • Long-term care insurance and long-term care expenses (there are limitations to what you can deduct)

  • Mattresses and boards bought specifically to alleviate an arthritic condition

  • Medical aids, including wheelchairs, hearing aids and batteries, eyeglasses, contact lenses, crutches, braces, and guide dogs (and their care)

  • Medicines and drugs

  • Nursing care

  • Nursing home expenses, including the entire cost of medical care, plus meals and lodging if the main reason for being in the home is to obtain medical care

  • Oxygen and oxygen equipment

  • Special education tuition for sending a mentally impaired or physically disabled person to a special school that has resources to relieve the disability

  • Smoking cessation programs (does not have to be recommended by a physician)

  • Swimming (the cost of therapeutic swimming prescribed by a physician)

  • Telephone (the cost and repair of special telephone equipment for a hearing-impaired person)

  • Television (the cost of equipment used to display the audio part of a TV program for hearing-impaired persons)

  • Transplant of an organ (but not hair transplants)

  • Transportation costs for obtaining medical care

  • Travel expenses for parents visiting their child in a special school for children with drug problems, where the visits are part of the medical treatment

  • Weight loss program, if it is recommended by a doctor to treat a specific medical condition or to cure any specific ailment or disease

  • Whirlpool baths prescribed by a doctor

  • X-ray services

The Comprehensive Guide to the Small Business HRA

Ready to Transform your Business with Little Effort Using Vertical?

PeopleKeep Team