Tax Deductions Caregivers Should Explore

  • March 14, 2019

A question that adult-child caregivers frequently have is whether or not the care they provide to an aging parent is tax deductible. It’s a great question to ask as these types of expenses can quickly add up. And no one wants to leave deductions on the table when it comes time to file taxes. 

While we aren’t in the business of providing tax or other financial advice, we can help point you in the right direction to find the answers to the most common caregiving tax questions. 

Tax Deductions and Family Caregivers

Question: Can you claim a parent or other family elder as a dependent?

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has a step-by-step tool to walk you through a determination process. No more guessing and wondering if your senior loved one qualifies.

Question: If an aging parent you are the caregiver for lives in your home, are you entitled to file as a head of household?

There are three general requirements for this caregiving-related tax issue. The caregiver must be unmarried, be able to claim the senior as their dependent, and must have paid more than half of the expenses for maintaining the home, shared with the aging, parent during the tax year. Review the “Special Rule for Parent” in IRS Publication 501 to learn more.

Question: Are the medical expenses an adult child pays on a parent’s behalf deductible?

The answer to this one is a bit more complicated. If your parent is or was a dependent at the time the expense was incurred or paid, and you itemize your taxes, you might be able deduct the expense. 

If you and your parent meet a few additional criteria, you will only be able to deduct expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income. You can read more in the “2018 Instructions for Schedule A.” 

Seek the Advice of an Experienced Professional

While those are the most common inquiries families have about caregiving and tax deductions, you might have additional questions. Because this is an area of the tax law that can be very confusing, we always suggest seniors and their family caregivers seek the advice of an experienced attorney or tax professional.

Follow the Five Star Senior Living Blog

We know the role of caregiver can be a challenging one. Family members want to provide the best possible care for their loved one. At Five Star Senior Living, we strive to make that goal easier to achieve. By following or subscribing to our blog, you have access to the latest news on caregiving, aging, senior care solutions, and more. 
 


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