Although most people are aware that you can claim tax relief on doctor/consultant fees and prescribed medicines (that are not reimbursed by a health insurer e.g. VHI) at 20%, there are some other reliefs available that are not so commonly known. Tax relief can be claimed for the last 4 years but the 2012 claim must be submitted before the end of this year. As in all cases, receipts are required to be maintained.
Nursing home fees
Tax relief on nursing home fees remains at the higher 40% tax rate. This means that on nursing home fees of €50,000, you may be entitled to a tax refund of up to €20,000. It is important to note that the person paying the fees is entitled to the relief e.g. the child of an elderly parent as opposed to the person being cared for.
Overseas medical costs
You may also claim relief for certain medical expenses incurred abroad e.g. where the health care is only available outside of Ireland. In these circumstances, the cost of travel and accommodation expenses of both the patient and a supporting carer (if required) may also be allowed).
Kidney patients are entitled to the cost of travelling to/from the hospital whereas home dialysis patients may claim additional associated costs e.g. electricity.
Relief for the purchase/repair of medical equipment
Examples here include wheel chairs, hearing aids, orthopaedic beds where the equipment is used based on the advice of a doctor.
Educational assessments for psychologists/speech and language therapists
This applies in respect of a child under the age of 18 or if over they must be in full time education.
Relief is allowed in this situation at an amount of €825 annually.
Non-routine dental/optical costs
Although routine care is not allowed e.g. checkups, sight testing etc, the cost of laser eye surgery is allowable. Similarly non routine dental treatment such as crowns, veneers root canal and orthodontics are allowed.
If you have a letter from your doctor stating that you require diabetic or coeliac products, then the cost of these products may also be allowable.
Medical Insurance Tax Relief
It should be noted that where the employer pays the full health insurance premium for employees this is treated as a BIK. The employee therefore needs to ensure that they have received a tax credit (at the standard rate) for the gross premium in his or her certificate of tax credits.
If you would like assistance with your tax affairs, please contact Coll & Co Chartered Accountants, Barna Galway. They can be contacted by phone: 091 592080 or by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Coll & Co, specialise in Personal tax & Pensions advice. Coll&Co, Chartered Accountants is regulated by their Institute ‘Chartered Accountants Ireland’ to provide Investment Advice.