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Returning Member

Nursing Home

I am doing taxes for my mother in law. She gets Social Security and a small pension. however all but $30 per month goes directly to the nursing home (she is on medicade). Does she need to file taxes and if so is there a credit of offset as she essentially has no income apart from that which goes straight to her nursing home?

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Expert Alumni

Nursing Home

if your mother is over the age of 65, her standard deduction is $13,850. If the total of her pension and 1/2 of her social security gross income exceeds that amount, then she would need to file.  if not, then there is no filing requirement.

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Returning Member

Nursing Home

Thank you for the response.  The total of the Social Security and Pension benefits do exceed that amount, however as she is on Medicaid all but $30 per month is sent from the various funds directly to the nursing home (she is in Alzheimer's care).  Am I able to deduct the nursing home costs as it is currently saying she owes money but essentially has no income.

 

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Level 14

Nursing Home

@DaveF1006 - can you please reconfirm your advice.

say my pension is $9,000 and my social security is $15,000.   $9000 + $7500 exceeds $13,850 but why would someone file????? the social security is not taxable in this case.  taxable social security doesn't kick in until the combined incomes exceeds $25,000 and it does not in this example. 

 

Simply, if your income, excluding social security, is below $13,850, there is no need to file AS LONG AS there are no withholdings.  the only way to get back withholdings is to file.  also, state taxes may have a lower limit.  (for example, there is no need to file in NC if your income, excluding SS is below $10,000 but you need to file if above that figure. 

 

@Barryea0619 - yes, she can deduct the medical expenses for the nursing home on Schedule A as a itemized deduction.  File the income tax( listing her social security and pensions and then fill out the itemized deductions. You can list all the nursing home expenses.  Only the part that exceeds 7.5% of the income is deductible.   But again, if her pensions are less than $13,850 (do not include social security) and there were no withholdings on the pension there is no need to file the federal return.  Rules for the state return may be different.   (for example, in NC, the math works at below $10,000 (excluding social security) ...over that and NC filing is required

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Expert Alumni

Nursing Home

In response to your question, in that scenario, your taxable income is only determined to be $9000.  In this instance, you would not be required to file a tax return. 

 

I ran these figures in my own test account, and determined that with a $9000 pension amount, she would have to have $51,000 in social security benefit to raise the taxable AGI above $13850. i don't think any one person's social security benefit reaches that high. Even with this scenario, her tax owed is $9.

 

As far as claiming nursing home costs, you can claim these if you claim your mother as a dependent on your return.  Please reference the advice that Barryea619  gave in the previous post.

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Level 14

Nursing Home

<<if your mother is over the age of 65, her standard deduction is $13,850. If the total of her pension and 1/2 of her social security gross income exceeds that amount, then she would need to file.  if not, then there is no filing requirement.>>

 

Can you please withdraw this advice? My example proves it is incorrect.   The correct advice is that if her income is less than $13850 (excluding social security) AND social security is less than $25,000, there is no need to file (single).  State taxes are a separate matter. 

 

<<As far as claiming nursing home costs, you can claim these if you claim your mother as a dependent on your return.  Please reference the advice that Barryea619  gave in the previous post.>>

 

 that is not the point..... the mother-in-law can claim the expenses on her own return.  

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