The NJ Medical Expense Deduction- Nothing to Sneeze at!
Taxpayers who don’t itemize on their federal tax return frequently overlook the NJ medical expense deduction. It is usually easier to reach the NJ income threshold for the medical deduction of 2%, compared to the federal income threshold of 7.5%. Both retirees as well as employed individuals can benefit from this deduction.
Retirees tend to have lower NJ income than federal income for two main reasons. Social Security is not taxable for NJ and NJ allows a pension income exclusion for taxpayers whose income is less than $150,000. Retirees also tend to have more medical expenses as they age. As a result, retirees should make an effort to take advantage of the considerable NJ medical expense deduction.
Taxpayers who are still receiving compensation have two frequently missed sources of deductible medical expenses for NJ. If you are self-employed or you received wages in 2021 from an S corporation in which you were a more-than-2% shareholder, you can deduct the amount you paid during the year for health insurance for yourself, your spouse, and your dependents. If you are employed and you contribute to your employer-provided health insurance coverage, you can deduct the amount of your contribution. Your federal wages may have been reduced by your contribution to your employer-provided health insurance. However, if your NJ wages were not reduced by the contribution than you may deduct the contribution as a medical expense on your NJ tax return.
Some examples of allowable medical expenses are: payments for doctor’s visits, dental care, hospital care, eye examinations, eyeglasses, medicine, and x-rays or other diagnostic services directed by your physician or dentist. Insurance premiums, including amounts paid under Social Security for Medicare, can be used as medical deductions. You also can deduct transportation costs.
Now that you have reduced your NJ taxes by the medical expense deduction, you probably feel healthier already.