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Changes to Itemized Deduction for 2013 Medical Expenses

If you itemize your deductions on Form 1040, Schedule A, new rules may affect your medical expense deduction. The new rules raise the threshold that unreimbursed medical and dental expenses you paid for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents must reach before a deduction is permitted.

Most people who itemize their deductions can claim deductions for unreimbursed medical expenses, those which are not covered by health insurance, that exceed 10 percent of their adjusted gross income. Previously, the law permitted deductions for unreimbursed expenses in excess of 7.5% of their adjusted gross income.

Temporary exemption for taxpayers age 65 and older

There is a temporary exemption for individuals age 65 and older until Dec. 31, 2016. If you are 65 years or older, you may continue to deduct total medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income through 2016. If you are married and only one of you is age 65 or older, you may still deduct total medical expenses that exceed 7.5% of your adjusted gross income.

This exemption is temporary. Beginning Jan. 1, 2017, the 10% threshold will apply to all taxpayers, including those over 65.

For more information, see our questions and answers.

Page Last Reviewed or Updated: 02-Jan-2014