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Can you deduct medical expenses paid by someone else?

I paid my son's medical expenses directly to his provider. Can he deduct these expenses on his tax return since those payments were a gift from me? I found some info online that said he can deduct them but wondering if anyone has done this before. He is not my dependent, files his own tax form

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Expert Alumni

Can you deduct medical expenses paid by someone else?

Yes. It is likely your son can deduct the medical expenses. Per the case, Lang v. Commissioner of the Internal Revenue, if you paid the expenses and had no legal obligation to do so, they can be considered a gift from you, and allow your son to deduct the expenses in the year paid.

 

In the Judith Lang case, Ms. Lang's mother paid her medical expenses and real estate taxes. Ms. Lang was not a minor. The Tax Court ruled that in effect the amount was a gift to the daughter, and deductible by the daughter as if she had paid it herself.

 

A key point in the case was “petitioner [Judith Lang] was not a minor, and Mrs. Field [Judith Lang’s mother] was not legally obligated to pay petitioner’s expenses.”  If Mrs. Field was obligated to pay the expenses, then her daughter may not have been able to deduct them, as they wouldn’t have been a gift. This would, for example, deny a deduction to a custodial parent for child support if it is legally required to be paid due to a divorce decree by the other parent.

 

Lang v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue

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Expert Alumni

Can you deduct medical expenses paid by someone else?

Yes. It is likely your son can deduct the medical expenses. Per the case, Lang v. Commissioner of the Internal Revenue, if you paid the expenses and had no legal obligation to do so, they can be considered a gift from you, and allow your son to deduct the expenses in the year paid.

 

In the Judith Lang case, Ms. Lang's mother paid her medical expenses and real estate taxes. Ms. Lang was not a minor. The Tax Court ruled that in effect the amount was a gift to the daughter, and deductible by the daughter as if she had paid it herself.

 

A key point in the case was “petitioner [Judith Lang] was not a minor, and Mrs. Field [Judith Lang’s mother] was not legally obligated to pay petitioner’s expenses.”  If Mrs. Field was obligated to pay the expenses, then her daughter may not have been able to deduct them, as they wouldn’t have been a gift. This would, for example, deny a deduction to a custodial parent for child support if it is legally required to be paid due to a divorce decree by the other parent.

 

Lang v. Commissioner of Internal Revenue

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**Mark the post that answers your question by clicking on "Mark as Best Answer"

View solution in original post

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New Member

Can you deduct medical expenses paid by someone else?

An add on question to this one.  If the non-dependent child can claim medical deduction, how do you address the HSA questions in Turbo tax for the non-dependent child?

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Expert Alumni

Can you deduct medical expenses paid by someone else?

I am not sure the HSA questions have any bearing for a non-dependent child.

 

If you have an HSA, you have, or had, insurance. If we assume you had insurance that kicked in over an 8K deductible, you paid 1K with the HSA and your mother paid 7K, then the 7K is deductible to you. The 7K is considered a gift to you. The 1K is not deductible because it came out of the HSA.

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