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Deduct child’s tuition as a medical expense

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in Small Business Tax

Is your child going off to college or prep school this fall? If so, write off the portion of the tuition that's attributable to health care as a medical expense. If the school doesn't automatically provide a breakdown of your child's tuition costs, ask for one.

Typically, tuition bills include an insurance premium for health care services. The IRS has approved medical expense deductions for student costs allocated to health care. But the cost qualifies for the deduction only if you have a breakdown of the health costs or one is "readily obtainable" from the school, so don't hesitate to ask. (IRS revenue ruling 54-457)

Remember, you only begin to deduct unreimbursed medical expenses once the annual total reaches 7.5 percent of your adjusted gross income. The allocated tuition costs might push you over the top.

Tip: If your child attends a special school—say for the hearing-impaired or learning disabled—you can deduct the entire tuition cost as a medical expense.

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