A survey of 800 PAYE employees carried out by Taxback.com revealed that less than half applied for a tax refund on medical expenses incurred over the past four years. The reasons given are varied, such as a belief that the process is too complicated.
So what exactly are you entitled to when it comes to claiming for medical expenses?
According to the Revenue Commissioners, any health expenses that you paid for are applicable – whether they are yours or those of a family or friend – such as doctors fees, prescription medicine, food products for those with ‘specific dietary requirements due to a medical condition’ and even IVF treatment. Expenses that don’t qualify include those that will be reimbursed by insurance companies, the HSE or other organisations, expenses for which you are compensated, cosmetic surgery (exceptions may apply when correcting a health issue) or standard dental and eye care.
The healthcare must be carried out by a registered practitioner and may be completed outside of Ireland. For most expenses, tax relief amounts to 20%. However, relief on nursing home expenses is provided at a rate of up to 40%.
Application for tax relief should be made at the end of the year, once you have received your P60 (queries regarding nursing home expenses can be made during the year). This can be done online using the e-Form 12. “If you make a claim for health expenses, you must keep a record of the receipts. You do not need to submit these receipts when you are claiming. However, we may request to view them if your claim is checked. You must keep receipts for six years once you have claimed for these expenses,” the Revenue Commissioners state.
For more in-depth information regarding relief on health-related expenses, see revenue.ie.