What Medical Expenses Are Deductible in 2023?

Navigating the Complexities of Tax-Deductible Medical Costs

In the realm of personal finance, understanding the intricacies of tax deductions can be a daunting task. Among the various deductible expenses, medical costs often raise questions and require careful consideration. This comprehensive guide will delve into the specifics of medical expenses that qualify for tax deductions in 2023, empowering you to optimize your tax strategy and maximize your savings.

Understanding the Basics: Qualifying Medical Expenses

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) allows taxpayers to deduct unreimbursed medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of their adjusted gross income (AGI). This means that only medical expenses that surpass this threshold can be claimed as deductions.

Qualifying Medical Expenses: A Comprehensive List

The IRS recognizes a wide range of medical expenses as eligible for deductions. These expenses include:

  • Payments for preventative care, such as routine checkups and vaccinations
  • Treatment costs for illnesses and injuries, including doctor’s visits, hospital stays, and surgeries
  • Dental and vision care expenses, such as cleanings, fillings, and eye exams
  • Visits to psychologists and psychiatrists for mental health treatment
  • Prescription medications and insulin
  • Medical devices and appliances, such as eyeglasses, contact lenses, hearing aids, and wheelchairs
  • Expenses incurred for qualified medical travel, including transportation to and from medical appointments and overnight stays for medical care

Non-Qualifying Medical Expenses: What’s Not Deductible

It’s important to note that not all medical expenses qualify for deductions. Some common expenses that are not deductible include:

  • Cosmetic procedures, such as elective surgeries and laser treatments
  • Non-prescription drugs (except insulin)
  • Health club dues and fitness expenses
  • Over-the-counter medications and vitamins
  • Expenses paid for by insurance or other reimbursement sources

Calculating Your Deductible Medical Expenses

To determine the amount of your deductible medical expenses, follow these steps:

  1. Gather your medical expense records: Collect receipts, bills, and statements for all qualified medical expenses incurred during the tax year.

  2. Calculate your AGI: Determine your AGI by subtracting certain deductions and adjustments from your total income. You can find your AGI on line 11 of your Form 1040.

  3. Multiply your AGI by 7.5%: This calculation will give you the threshold amount that your medical expenses must exceed to be deductible.

  4. Subtract the threshold amount from your total medical expenses: The resulting amount represents your deductible medical expenses.

Claiming Your Medical Expense Deduction: Form 1040

To claim your medical expense deduction, you must itemize your deductions on Schedule A of your Form 1040. Follow these steps:

  1. Complete Schedule A: List your deductible medical expenses on line 1 of Schedule A.

  2. Enter your AGI: Transfer your AGI from your Form 1040 to line 2 of Schedule A.

  3. Calculate your deductible medical expenses: Subtract the threshold amount (7.5% of your AGI) from your total medical expenses and enter the result on line 4 of Schedule A.

  4. Add your other itemized deductions: Combine your deductible medical expenses with any other itemized deductions, such as charitable contributions and mortgage interest.

  5. Compare your itemized deductions to the standard deduction: Determine if your total itemized deductions, including your medical expenses, exceed the standard deduction. If they do, it is beneficial to itemize your deductions.

Additional Considerations

  • Flexible spending accounts (FSAs) and health savings accounts (HSAs): Contributions to FSAs and HSAs are made with pre-tax dollars, reducing your taxable income. However, expenses paid from these accounts are not deductible.

  • Medicare premiums: Medicare Part B premiums are deductible as medical expenses if you itemize your deductions.

  • Long-term care insurance premiums: Premiums for qualified long-term care insurance policies may be deductible as medical expenses.

Understanding the deductibility of medical expenses can help you optimize your tax strategy and potentially save money on your tax bill. By carefully tracking your medical expenses and following the guidelines outlined in this guide, you can maximize your deductions and reduce your tax liability. Remember to consult with a tax professional for personalized advice and assistance with your specific tax situation.

CPA EXPLAINS How To Deduct ALL Medical Expenses From Taxes


What qualifies as a deductible medical expense?

Key Takeaways. If you incurred substantial medical expenses not covered by insurance, you might be able to claim them as deductions on your tax return. These costs include health insurance premiums, hospital stays, doctor appointments, and prescriptions.

What are IRS allowable medical expenses for 2021?

How Much of the Expenses Can You Deduct? Generally, you can deduct on Schedule A (Form 1040) only the amount of your medical and dental expenses that is more than 7.5% of your AGI.

Can you deduct Medicare premiums?

Are Medicare premiums tax deductible? Yes, your Medicare premiums can be tax deductible as a medical expense if you itemize deductions on your federal income tax return. You can only deduct medical expenses after they add up to more than 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income (AGI).

Will medical expenses be tax deductible in 2021?

President Trump’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act allowed taxpayers in 2017 and 2018 to deduct the total amount of medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of their adjusted gross income (AGI). This threshold was originally scheduled to go up to 10% of AGI in 2019, but the 7.5% of AGI was extended to tax year 2021.

Should I itemize my medical expenses for 2021?

If itemizing your deduction is the better option, you’ll need to clear one more hurdle in order to deduct your medical expenses: They have to exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI) for 2021. Your AGI is your gross income minus certain expenses, such as student loan interest and contributions to your retirement account.

What medical expenses can I deduct on a 1040?

Medical expenses include dental expenses, and in this publication the term “medical expenses” is often used to refer to medical and dental expenses. You can deduct on Schedule A (Form 1040) only the part of your medical and dental expenses that is more than 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI).

How do I deduct unreimbursed medical expenses?

To accomplish this, your deductions must be from a list approved by the Internal Revenue Service, and you must itemize your deductions. • You can only deduct unreimbursed medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income (AGI), found on line 11 of your 2023 Form 1040.

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