Can You Claim Both Disability and Attendant Care Expenses?

Can You Claim Both Disability and Attendant Care Expenses?

  • Prakash Bartaula
  • 5 July, 2024
5 Min Read

Yes, you can claim both disability and attendant care expenses if you meet specific eligibility criteria set by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC). Disability expenses typically cover costs like home or vehicle modifications and special medical equipment, while attendant care expenses relate to costs incurred for personal care services provided by a caregiver. To successfully claim these expenses, you must ensure that the expenses are distinct and necessary, maintain accurate records, and include them in the appropriate sections of your tax return.

Can You Claim Both Disability and Attendant Care Expenses?

When it comes to tax deductions for medical expenses, many individuals with disabilities or those caring for someone with a disability often wonder about the possibility of claiming both disability and attendant care expenses. The short answer is yes, in many cases, you can claim both. However, it’s essential to understand the nuances and requirements for each type of claim.

Can You Claim Both Disability and Attendant Care Expenses?

Defining Disability Expenses

Disability expenses refer to costs incurred due to a physical or mental impairment that significantly restricts an individual’s ability to perform basic activities of daily living. These expenses may include:

  • Modifications to a home or vehicle
  • Special equipment or devices
  • Therapy or rehabilitation services
  • Transportation costs for medical appointments

Understanding Attendant Care Expenses

Attendant care expenses are costs associated with hiring someone to provide personal care services to an individual with a disability. These services may include:

  • Assistance with dressing, bathing, and grooming
  • Meal preparation and feeding
  • Medication management
  • Mobility assistance

Eligibility Criteria for Claiming Both Expenses

To claim both disability and attendant care expenses, you must meet specific eligibility criteria set by HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) in the UK. These criteria include:

  1. Having a qualifying disability as defined by HMRC
  2. Incurring eligible expenses related to the disability
  3. Employing a caregiver or attendant to provide necessary care services

It’s important to note that the ability to claim both types of expenses doesn’t mean you can claim the same expense twice. Each claim must be for distinct and separate costs.

How to Claim Disability and Attendant Care Expenses

how to claim

Claiming Disability Expenses

To claim disability expenses:

  1. Keep detailed records of all disability-related expenses throughout the tax year.
  2. Determine which expenses qualify for tax relief under HMRC guidelines.
  3. Complete the relevant sections of your Self Assessment tax return, if applicable.
  4. For employees, you may be able to claim tax relief directly through HMRC’s online service.

Claiming Attendant Care Expenses

To claim attendant care expenses:

  1. Maintain accurate records of payments made to caregivers or attendants.
  2. Ensure the care provided is directly related to your disability.
  3. Include these expenses in the medical expenses section of your tax return.
  4. Provide documentation if requested by HMRC.

Examples of Qualifying Expenses

To help clarify what can be claimed, here are some examples of qualifying expenses for both disability and attendant care:

Disability Expenses:

  • Cost of purchasing and maintaining a wheelchair
  • Expenses for guide dogs for visually impaired individuals
  • Home modifications such as installing ramps or widening doorways
  • Special computer software for individuals with visual or hearing impairments

Attendant Care Expenses:

  • Wages paid to a personal care attendant
  • Costs associated with nursing home care
  • Fees for in-home healthcare services
  • Expenses for respite care to provide relief for primary caregivers

Common Pitfalls to Avoid

When claiming both disability and attendant care expenses, be aware of these common pitfalls:

  1. Double-claiming: Ensure you’re not claiming the same expense under both categories.
  2. Insufficient documentation: Always keep detailed records and receipts for all expenses.
  3. Claiming ineligible expenses: Not all disability-related costs qualify for tax relief. Familiarise yourself with HMRC guidelines.
  4. Overlooking time limits: Be aware of the deadlines for claiming these expenses on your tax return.
  5. Failing to meet the disability criteria: Ensure you meet HMRC’s definition of disability before claiming related expenses.

Recent Changes in Tax Laws

Tax laws and thresholds can change from year to year. As of the 2023/2024 tax year, some notable points to consider include:

  • The Personal Independence Payment (PIP) has replaced the Disability Living Allowance (DLA) for most claimants aged 16 to 64.
  • The tax-free allowance for the Disabled Persons’ Tax Credit has increased.
  • There have been changes to the rates and thresholds for various disability-related benefits.

It’s crucial to stay informed about these changes as they may affect your ability to claim certain expenses or the amount you can claim.

Importance of Professional Advice

While this guide provides an overview of claiming both disability and attendant care expenses, tax laws can be complex and subject to change. It’s always advisable to consult with a qualified tax professional or accountant who specialises in disability-related tax matters. They can provide personalised advice based on your specific situation and ensure you’re maximising your eligible deductions while remaining compliant with HMRC regulations.

Remember, claiming the right expenses can significantly reduce your tax burden and help offset the additional costs associated with living with a disability or providing care for someone with a disability. By understanding the rules and maintaining proper documentation, you can confidently navigate the process of claiming both disability and attendant care expenses on your tax return.

 

Prakash Bartaula

Joined : 5 April, 2024

I’m deeply passionate about the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) and dedicated to exploring its intricacies. Through research, communication, and writing, I aim to shed light on NDIS provisions and empower individuals with disabilities. Join me as we navigate the transformative potential of the NDIS together.

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