Medical Deductions for Health Improvement Expenses

Tax attorney Rob Wood says that medical deductions may be available for federal taxpayers. In his article “Tax Break For Burning Your Belly Fat?,” Wood discusses medical deductions that are available to taxpayers, provided a doctor has prescribed the treatment that is the subject of the deduction.

Rob Wood

Rob Wood

For many taxpayers, health care expenses are covered by insurance and are thus not deductible. Taxpayers struggling with weight problems and paying for items not covered by health insurance may seek to qualify the expenses as medical deductions. Wood notes “classic cases” such as deductible swimming pools. However, the threshold to be crossed before expenses become deductible is very high. Medical expenses are deductible when they exceed 10% of adjusted gross income.

Common senses comes into play when the IRS is assessing the deductibility of an expense. Wood mentions the case of Halby v. Commissioner in which a 78-year-old lawyer took a medical deduction for “therapeutic treatments by prostitutes.” The deduction was, not surprisingly, disallowed.

For more information on the subject, please refer to Mr. Wood’s article in Forbes. Robert Wood is a tax attorney with Wood, LLP in San Francisco, California and spoke with The Tax Law Channel, an affiliate of The Legal Broadcast Network.  The Legal Broadcast Network is a featured network of the Sequence Media Group.