Tax time!

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skypup
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Re: Tax time!

Postby skypup » Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:42 pm

Can't we include hotel bills and meal expenses if we have to travel for treatment, too? Plus tolls and parking fees...

weisssoccermom
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Re: Tax time!

Postby weisssoccermom » Wed Jan 28, 2015 11:58 pm

Skypup.....yes and no to your question about lodging.
Yes IF you can show:

1. The lodging is mainly for and necessary for your medical care
2. Simply put, your medical treatment must be provided by a doctor in a licensed hospital or in an affiliated part of the hospital (or the equivalent of a hospital)
3. The lodging isn't overly priced or extravagent
4. No part of your trip can be for pleasure, vacation or business

You are allowed (this was last year) $50/person/night for the cost of lodging, regardless of what the actual cost of the hotel/motel was. If, however, you traveled with a person, you may take the $50/night allowance for one other person. However, that person must be claimed on your return.

Meals, however, are another story and I don't believe can be included unless you pay for the cost of meals in a hospital or hospital environment. Yes to parking and tolls...but as I said earlier, keep verification/proof of all expenses.

For a prior poster, no you cannot deduct expenses such as contact lens solution unless it is specifically Rx'd by the doctor. You can, however, be reimbursed for contact lens solution from your FSA or HSA.
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juliej
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Re: Tax time!

Postby juliej » Thu Jan 29, 2015 5:19 pm

Skypup wrote:Can't we include hotel bills and meal expenses if we have to travel for treatment, too? Plus tolls and parking fees...


Jaynee is right, Skypup. You can deduct your hotel bill (actually only $50 per night) if it was solely for the purpose of obtaining medical treatment. And mileage (standard medical mileage rate of 23.5 cents a mile or the actual cost of gas and oil), tolls, parking, subway or taxi fares, etc. are also deductible. Meals, however, can not be deducted because it's assumed you'd have to eat anyway. :(

Here is an HTML version of Publication 502, Medical and Dental Expenses:

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p502/index.html
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sjring
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Re: Tax time!

Postby sjring » Fri Jan 30, 2015 9:45 am

Chipping in from another accountant (but NOT a tax professional).

I don't think I saw mentioned earlier, but anything reimbursed from a Medical Flexible Spending Account (if you have one through work) cannot be claimed.

And as wisesoccermom mentioned, the advice that has been provided to date is for federal taxes. Your state (and or locality) may vary. I know here in Pennsylvania there essentially isn't a medical deduction. Our taxes, like our planet, are relatively flat.

And now I have Tom Lehrer's song "New Math" stuck in my head.
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dianetavegia
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Re: Tax time!

Postby dianetavegia » Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:21 am

My husband's employer took out our insurance before our salary was taxed to give us a higher monthly income but even with low income and over $9,000 in medical expenses, we're getting back $88.00. Almost not worth filing. At least we don't OWE anything!

My 20 year old who lives at home and pays no rent (OUR insistence), etc., got back over $1,100 today. He filed on Jan. 16th. This is the son who nursed me thru chemo and sat beside me doing his home schooling while I was so weak on the sofa, keeping me hydrated, helping me to the bathroom, making my lunch, keeping my spirits up, doing housework and laundry......... Best kid in the world!
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alphagam
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Re: Tax time!

Postby alphagam » Fri Jan 30, 2015 12:02 pm

As a tax preparer, anyone's refund is strictly based on how much you had withheld during the year. There are refundable credits such as the Earned Income Tax Credit that you can qualify for based on children and income, but at it's core, your refund us based on your withholding. You have 8000.00 withheld, your tax liability is 7000.00. Refund is 1000.00, You have 7088.00 withheld and your tax liability is 7000.00, you get an 88.00 refund. Also don't forget that there is a Standard Deduction. It would be foolish to itemize unless your tax deductions are more than the Standard Deduction for your filing statue.
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sjring
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Re: Tax time!

Postby sjring » Fri Jan 30, 2015 1:40 pm

alphagam is completely correct.

Although psychologically a refund feels great, in reality it represent the amount of an interest free loan you gave the government during the prior year. Personally I'd rather have that money to spend throughout the year (maybe even owe the government a small amount at tax time, then they've given me an interest free loan).
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Maintenance chemo - Avastin & 5-FU infusions (Jun-14 to Jul-15)
Jul-15: Mets to lymph nodes, resuming FOLFOX
Sep-15: MRI showed stability, back to maintenance chemo.


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