Don't Forget These Medical Deductions on Taxes
Following are medical deductions that are frequently overlooked:
- The cost of counseling by psychiatrists, psychologists, & psychiatric social workers.
- Long-distance charges related to medical care (such as to any doctor out of your area.
- Medical Insurance coverage, including long-term care riders on life insurance policies (but not the life insurance policy itself), cancer insurance, and the medical care coverage portion included on some automobile and homeowner's insurance policies.
- The cost of travel to Alcoholic's Anonymous meetings.
- Special services furnished by a school for the mentally or physically handicapped if the handicap is a principle reason for the individual's presence in the school. The expenses of attending such a school are deductible, including the cost of ordinary education which is incidental to the school's special services.
- The cost of lodging (up to $50 per night) while away from home if it is "primarily for and essential to medical care" may be deductible if the medial care is provided by a physician in a licensed hospital or equivalent facility, and there is "no significant element of personal pleasure, recreation, or vacation" in the travel. This also includes the lodging expenses of the person accompanying the person receiving treatment if he or she is unable to travel alone.
- Other travel costs using either actual expenses or a standard rate per mile (ask your accountant), plus parking fees and tolls.
- Un-reimbursed amounts paid for "any qualified long-term care insurance contract" to the extent that the premiums do not exceed specified dollar limits.
- The Medicare insurance taken out of your Social Security benefit check.
- Payments to non-medical personnel to assist those who are blind, deaf, or have similar disabilities; for example, an aid who takes notes for a deaf student in college or any school.
- Amounts paid to maintain a dependent in a therapeutic center for drug or alcohol abuse, including the cost of meals and lodging incidental to the treatment.
- The cost of weight reduction programs when undertaken on a physician's recommendation for the treatment of specific medical conditions related to obesity.
- The cost of swimming pool if incurred primarily for the medical care of a qualifying individual. The deduction allowed is the excess of the cost of the pool over the increase in the value of your property, and includes maintenance costs.
Other miscellaneous items, such as:
- Payments for eye glasses, hearing aids and components, and artificial teeth and limbs.
- The cost of a seeing-eye (or hearing) dog including training and upkeep.
- The cost of crutches.
- The cost of a reclining chair, if prescribed by a doctor and serves no purpose other than easing the patient's condition, and is not used as ordinary furniture.
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