Medical expenses

 Important: Do not enter any medical expense amounts that you’ve already entered in box 85 of  your T4 page or box 135 of your T4A page. H&R Block’s tax software will automatically claim these  amounts for you on your return. You only need to enter, on this page, the medical expenses that you  haven’t entered anywhere else on your return.

 

You can claim medical expenses for:

  • Yourself
  • Your spouse or common-law partner
  • Your or your spouse’s child under the age of 18 or
  • Your dependants (such as your or your spouse’s child or grandchild over 18, parent, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, niece, or nephew) – these are claimed under the dependant’s section in H&R Block’s tax software. Refer to our online help centre article for more information on claiming medical expenses for other dependants

You can claim medical expenses for any 12-month period ending in 2018 and which have not already been claimed in 2017. For example, for the 2018 tax year, you could claim expenses paid in 2017 and in 2018.

You can claim all or a portion of the medical expenses for which you’ve not been or will not be reimbursed. For example, let's say your health insurance plan reimbursed you for 80% of your medical expenses, you can only claim the remaining 20% on your return.

Note: The medical expenses you’re claiming can’t be used to calculate any other credit, including the disability supports deduction. And remember, if you’re eligible to claim the federal medical expenses amount, you’re also entitled to claim a corresponding provincial tax credit, which might vary in amount depending on the province or territory you live in:

Which medical expenses are eligible for the credit?

Some common eligible medical expenses include:

  • Medical services provided by qualified medical practitioners (includes diagnostic, therapeutic or rehabilitative services provided by a medical practitioner acting within the scope of his or her professional training)
  • Fees paid to a medical practitioner to complete health and disability forms
  • Dentist and dental services
  • Prescription drugs and medications​
  • Medical marihuana
  • Ambulance service to or from a hospital
  • Prescription eyeglasses and prescription contact lenses
  • Laboratory tests and x-rays
  • Diabetic testing supplies
  • Premiums for private health care plans, including those you paid through payroll deductions (premiums for mandatory provincial health plans, such as the British Columbia medical services plan, are not claimable)
  • Travel expenses
  • Cost to adapt a van to transport a person who needs a wheelchair
  • Expenses paid to conceive a child (such as lab tests, cost of medical services, and prescription drugs)

Note: Refer to the CRA website for  a complete list of eligible medical expenses and the documentation you’ll need to claim these.

How much can I claim?

The amount you can claim for your medical expenses is the total expenses you paid minus either 3% of your net income or $2,302, whichever is less.

Who should claim the expenses?

If you are filing a return with your spouse or common law partner, you cannot split medical expense amounts. You can, however, choose who you’d like to claim the entire amount(s).

Tax tip:  It is usually more beneficial for the person with the lower income to claim the amount.

To choose who will claim the medical expenses on the WRAP-UP tab, under the OPTIMIZATION icon, click the Optimized credit link.

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Select Yes in response to the question, Do you want to make any changes in the table above? (such as changing the optimized amounts or choosing not to claim a credit) and then indicate who will claim the medical expenses.

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Where do I claim this?

Follow these steps in H&R Block’s 2018 tax software to claim eligible medical expenses for yourself, your spouse or common-law partner, or for your dependant child under 18.

  1. Under the PREPARE tab, click the MOST POPULAR icon. You’ll find yourself here:

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  1. Under the CREDITS heading, select the checkbox labelled Medical expenses and click Continue.
  2. When you arrive at the Medical expenses page, enter your information into the tax software.

Can I claim the amount I paid to move to a more accessible home?

Yes. According to the CRA, if you or a family member suffer from a prolonged mobility impairment and moved to a house that’s more accessible or functional, you can claim reasonable moving expenses (up to $2,000). Having said that, these amounts can only be claimed as a medical expense as long as they haven’t been claimed as moving expenses on your, or someone else’s return.

I traveled to get medical services

If you traveled more than 40 km one way from your home to get medical services, you’ll be able to claim certain expenses as medical expenses on your tax return.

Note: Expenses paid for travel less than 40 km one way are not eligible for this tax credit.

For example, if you traveled more than 40 km but less than 80 km one way to get medical services, you can claim the cost of the public transportation expenses (for example, taxis, bus, or train).

If you traveled more than 80 km one way from your home, you can claim the cost of travel expenses such as accommodations, meals, and parking.

In both cases, you can claim your travel expenses if:

  • Similar medical services were not available near your home
  • You took a reasonably direct route to get to the medical services
  • It is reasonable for you to travel to that place for the medical services

If you also qualify for the northern residents deduction, you might be able to choose how to claim your expenses. Refer to the CRA website for more information on the northern residents deduction.

I’m a resident of Québec, can I claim my RAMQ contributions?

Yes. If you were required to pay premiums for Québec's public prescription drug insurance plan (RAMQ) in 2017, you can claim these contributions as a medical expense on your 2018 federal return. To do this, enter the amount from line 447 of your 2017 Québec return in the field shown below on the Medical expenses page:

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I entered my medical expenses in the software but don’t see a difference in my return

You'll only see a difference in your refund or tax owing amount if you have a significant amount of medical expenses. Your medical expenses must be more than $2,302, or 3% of your net income (whichever is less) for the amount to make a difference to your refund or tax owing.

For example, let’s say your 2018 net income is $30,000.  On October 1, 2018, you paid $300 for prescription glasses and that was your only medical expense for the year. Since your medical expense is less than 3% of your net income, entering this amount on your 2018 tax return won’t make a difference to your refund or tax owed.

  2018 Net income = $30,000

  2018 Medical expenses = $300

  $30,000 X 3% = $900

$300 - $900 = –$600  --  a negative amount can’t be claimed

However, since medical expenses paid in any 12-month period ending in the tax year are claimable, you might be able to combine the above expense amount with other medical expenses you’ll have next year and claim it on that year’s return.

 October 1, 2018

 $300 for glasses

 February 10, 2019

 $500 for prescriptions

 June 5, 2019

 $1200 for dental services

 Total medical expenses from October 1, 2018 to October 1, 2019

 $2,000

 

2018 Net income = $30,000

$30,000 X 3% = $900

$2,000 - $900 = $1,100  --  your 2019 claimable medical expenses amount

I didn’t enter medical expenses but I still see an amount on my return!

You might see an amount for medical expenses on your return, even if you didn’t enter it on the Medical expenses page in H&R Block’s tax software. This occurs if you paid premiums to a private health services plan through your payroll and this amount was included in box 85 of your T4 slip or box 135 of your T4A slip.

These amounts qualify as medical expenses and H&R Block’s tax software automatically claims them for you when you enter them on the T4 or T4A page of your return.

Where can I learn more?

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