It’s the time of year when Americans must prepare their tax returns. Fortunately, if you itemize your medical expenses, hearing aids are tax-deductible. This makes medical expenses more affordable for people who face relatively high medical costs. According to the IRS, to qualify for the deduction, you must spend more than 7.5% of your income on medical and dental expenses, and itemize your medical expenses. If you do itemize medical expenses, remember to include your hearing-related purchases as you prepare your return.¹
If you don’t normally itemize your medical expenses but had significant expenses, such as a hospital stay or surgery in 2020, you may want to check with a tax professional to learn if you would benefit from itemizing your medical expenses this particular year. (Likewise, if you plan for major medical expenses in 2021, it might be a good time to check if you or your spouse need hearing aids in the near term, so you can deduct them next year.)
What hearing-related expenses can you deduct?
If you itemize your medical and dental expenses (using a Schedule A Form 1040) you can deduct your hearing-related medical expenses, including:
Any model of hearing aid is tax-deductible.
Hearing tests or copays for visits to an audiologist or ENT.
Hearing aids, batteries for hearing aids and hearing-related accessories.
Premiums for hearing aid insurance and other medical insurance.
Transportation costs to your medical appointments, including for fittings and adjusting your hearing aids.
What other hearing loss-related costs can you include?
According to the team at TurboTax, remember to include these hearing-related deductions if you are itemizing medical expenses:²
Hearing aid repairs.
Equipment and costs related to using the phone. This may include special ringers, caption phones or teleprinters.
Accessories that make it easier to hear the television, such as Oticon’s ConnectClip or TV adapter (available at HearingLife).
Upgrades to your home with special smoke detectors, doorbells and burglar alarms for people with hearing loss.
Keep in mind, if you have a smartphone that you haven't connected to your hearing aids, you can use our library of self-help videos and guides.
Also, if you have a chronic medical illness, attending a conference related to that illness counts, but you cannot include meals or lodging.
Caregivers take note!
If you have a person in your household, such as a parent or child, who purchased hearing aids last year, you can deduct these costs on your taxes if you claim this person as a dependent. That's great news for caregivers. Not sure if you qualify? Speak with a tax professional or an accountant for details regarding your specific circumstances.
Wonder what's covered?
Fortunately, the IRS has a helpful online resource, “Can I Deduct My Medical and Dental Expenses?” It walks you through a series of questions about your situation to help determine the right course of action for your individual needs.
Have questions about hearing-related services?
Recently, the IRS extended the filing deadline for 2020 taxes. That gives you a little more time to gather your receipts. Should you have purchased hearing aids in 2020 from HearingLife and require documentation, your provider or Patient Care Coordinator is able to provide a receipt.
Whether or not you qualify for a hearing-related tax deduction, HearingLife often has special offers and financing through our partners at CareCredit®.