Women's Health

Tax Breaks for Those Living with Breast Cancer

Tax Breaks for Those Living with Breast Cancer

Despite living with breast cancer, there is a faint silver lining peeking through the storm cloud.

Taxes are no fun for anyone

Nobody likes tax season. It means hard-earned money and time spent away from family and loved ones.

Taxes are a relatively big chunk of that hard-earned money taken from you to be spent in the control of other people. Though taxes are necessary for any functional society to turn its gears and take care of its people, they can also be a nuisance for each individual, upstanding citizen that has to pay them.

Besides having to fork over a chunk of your hard-earned money, you're also having to deal with mountains of redundant paperwork. It's no fun at all, and even accountants dread tax season. Things get complicated quickly, and when you're battling a disease like breast cancer, taxes are the last thing you need to further complicate your life.

Breast cancer treatments are exceedingly expensive. From surgeries, chemotherapy, radiation, and visits with a million different specialists, medical care costs for this illness do not come cheap.

As your cancer treatments empty your wallet, you have less time, too.

As if to rub salt on the wound, taking care of breast cancer is not only necessary for survival but also time-consuming too. Surgeries can take several weeks before a person can recover fully, especially if they are used to being very active at work or at home. Chemotherapy treatments can vary in frequency and duration, with some people requiring hospital visits every few days for several weeks at a time. Radiation is no different. Depending on the regimen that is prescribed, you can find yourself going back and forth to the treatment center more often than you can afford. All this combined with regular checkups with your oncologist and other specialists can really take up most of your time. So how is one to work at their regular day jobs if they have breast cancer? Now, combine a really expensive disease with a need to take off time from work. You now have a recipe for a financial crisis.

Tax breaks for breast cancer patients simply makes sense

Though everybody dreads tax season, we know that it can be especially tough for someone going through breast cancer. Though filling out all the paperwork and going through all your records may be a lot of hard work and pain, it will be worth it if you can save a lot of money. Anything that can help your financial situation is extremely important since medical care costs are so high. We're going to discuss some helpful tips and tricks that can help you save as much money as you can this tax season.

Even if you trust your doctor to make decisions for you, make sure you're informed about your breast cancer treatment options.

When it comes to breast cancer treatment, it's important that you take the wheel along with your doctor. Too often, patients tend to sit back and let their healthcare team go for the drive. Though it’s important to trust your healthcare team, it's ultimately in your best interest to be fully involved in the treatment decision process for your breast cancer. No one has your best interests in mind more than you, no matter how caring and compassionate your doctor may be. One good thing that comes from being involved in your care plan is that you know you're going to be given the best treatment option for your unique situation.

Keep track of your medical care by keeping a list of breast cancer treatments you've signed up for.

When you're more familiar with the treatments you are getting, you're also more equipped to keep track of them. Make sure to keep a list of the treatments you're signing up for! This will come in handy when it's tax season, so you have a list of medical expenses you might be able to deduct from your taxes. Many routine breast cancer treatments can be written off, including mastectomies, breast prostheses, and even chemotherapy. If you're a breast cancer patient, you're likely going to save some money on taxes this year!

Some required criteria

If you have a list recorded of all your treatments, it'll be much easier to look at that list to determine which ones are likely going to qualify for a tax break. However, all tax-deductible expenses have to fit a series of specific criteria. The cost of the expense has to be directly related to diagnosis, treatment, or prevention of cancer, the payment had to be for a legal medical service, and the treatment had to affect function or a part of your body. In addition, a doctor, surgeon, or other medical practitioner had to have performed the service that was paid for, the service had to have alleviated some sort of mental or physical health issue, and the service can't be something that is already generally good for health (such as a bottle of vitamins). Deductions have to meet all of these criteria to be considered.

Things can get complicated

Clearly, writing off medical expenses in the form of tax deductions is not easy. So, it's always a good idea to consult with a personal tax consultant. Though it will definitely pay off if you are also knowledgeable about the expenses you may potentially qualify for, things can get complex quickly. Make sure you get the help of a professional so you ensure that all your taxes are in order and legally compliant.

In summary, make sure you pay attention to what tax breaks you qualify for. You have a chance to save a lot of money!

Final thoughts

Just when cancer feels like it has poisoned every aspect of your life, know that it can at least be helpful for this year's tax season. When medical bills are skyrocketing and finances are tight, this couldn't be more helpful! Make sure you consult with a personal tax consultant to make sure you're getting the most out of your deductibles so you can save some money. That's money that can be better spent on your health!