Medical bills are expensive. Everyone needs to visit the doctor, but not everyone can pay all the fees, charges, medical supplies, and all other expenditures that they charge. This is without even considering lab work, hospitalization, and mileage not only to and from the doctor but to and from the pharmacy. In our economy people have to save wherever they can, and your doctor visits and medication shouldn't be one where people have to cut costs. One way to save a little off all those bills is to file them in your taxes. There are several deductions and credits available on a variety of things you have to spend money on in your journey to good health and well-being.
These deductions and credits are filed with a Schedule A of your 1040. Your medical expenses must exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. The best way to calculate how much you will save is to group up your expenses in to different categories, like in this article.
First, your health insurance premiums are a great place to start calculating your expenses. Anything that is directly taken from your paycheck or that you pay out of pocket for your health insurance is deductible, and this is usually your largest medical expenditure. Keep a record of all payments to your insurance provider. Making a check out to your insurance is the easiest way to keep a record, as it will be copied several times with the bank and can be retrieved if anything happens to your copy.
Next, your second most expensive thing you have to deal with is your actual medical services. This could be payments and co-pays that you give to an M.D., dentist, chiropractor, any type of specialist, pediatrician and even a provider of a second opinion can be deducted. It's important to start at the beginning of the year and keep track of every receipt from paying these individuals until the end of the calender year. Make sure to include the recipient and the address of the place your appointment was held.
Medication can become a very expensive ordeal. Any prescriptions have to be written by a licensed medical professional to treat a condition that is either chronic or acute qualify as deductible. This includes prescriptions for special-strength vitamins or supplements, but nothing Over-the-counter is deductible. As with the other expenditures, keep all receipts and make the appropriate documents to list these as medical expenses. You may be able to request a year-end summary of all your transactions and purchases specifically for your taxes.
Medicine is often not the only thing prescribed to you if you need further assistance. Any kind of eyeglasses that require a prescription, hearing aids, automated motion assistance vehicles, braces for any part of the body, orthopedic shoes, and similar devices that require a licensed specialist to approve their use. This type of deduction will need a receipt from the equipment supplier and a copy of the letter of confirmation for the need of such a device. A good rule of thumb is to keep everything they give you, just in case.
Most people don't know this, but your travel is a great deduction to take that can potentially turn your taxes into a refund. All forms of travel for medical reasons can be deducted if you track your expenditures correctly. First, keep track of the the distance between your home address and the address of your destination. Determine the mileage exactly through means of Global Positioning Systems or through the internet. Make sure this is exact, in the event of being audited you don't want to be making assumptions. This can be tracked for appointments, device providers, and even trips to the pharmacy. Multiply the mileage by 2 for a round trip, and then the actual number of trips you had to make to each location. Record all this information for each place to accrue your deduction.
Keep in mind your medical expenses and record everything in an organized fashion, and you will have a potent list of deductions that can really save and hopefully get you a positive return that can help you in this troubled economy. These and several other deductions are all available to you and can be brought to your attention if you go to a professional tax expert. We here at Online Tax Pros are always looking to save you the most on your taxes, and are definitely worth your time and consideration this tax season. We look forward to seeing how much you can save!