How to Deduct Medical Expenses When Filing Jointly

Doctor's appointments typically qualify for the medical expenses deduction.
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The Internal Revenue Service allows you to take a tax deduction for a portion of your medical and dental expenses. When you file jointly as a married couple, that doubles your opportunity for deductions. But there's a big catch: The amount you can deduct is determined by your income -- the more you make, the less you can deduct. So if you both work, that raises the bar to qualify for a sizable medical deduction. Regardless, to deduct your medical expenses, you must itemize your tax deductions, which means filling out Form 1040 and Schedule A.

Step 1

Fill out the first portion of Form 1040, the standard U.S. individual income tax return, to determine combined federal adjusted gross income for you and your spouse.

Step 2

Gather all records of medical and dental expenses that you and your spouse paid for yourselves, as well as for anyone whom you are claiming as a dependent on your tax return.

Step 3

Add up your total out-of-pocket expenses.

Step 4

Subtract any reimbursements you have received, such as from an employer.

Step 5

Enter the result on Line 1 of Schedule A, in the section labeled "Medical and Dental Expenses."

Step 6

Enter your federal adjusted gross income on Line 2 of Schedule A.

Step 7

Mulitply Line 2 by 0.075, and enter the result on Line 3.

Step 8

Subtract Line 3 from Line 1 and enter the result on Line 4. This is your allowable deduction for medical and dental expenses. If the result is negative -- that is, if Line 3 is larger than Line 1 -- enter "0."

Step 9

Complete the rest of Schedule A and continue filling out your return.

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