“The IRS has concluded that breast pumps and supplies that assist lactation are medical care…because, like obstetric care, they are for the purpose of affecting a structure or function of the body of the lactating woman.”
Did you ever think you’d want to fist bump the IRS? I did when I found out that my breast pump and supplies could be taken off my taxes. Any time a government institution steps up to support breastfeeding, I get pretty excited!
Be sure to save your receipts for all expenses related to delivering your baby and breastfeeding!
Having a baby is expensive. By taking advantage of the tax breaks available for parents, you’ll have more money to put toward your child’s other needs. Even if you aren’t breastfeeding, there are several avenues to help parents save some dough:
If you have a flexible spending account (FSA), your pre-tax earnings can be used to help cover the cost of breast pumps, as well as other lactation supplies. If you don’t have an FSA, or if you maxed it out with other expenses, the next section is for you.
2) Deductible Lactation Support
If your out-of-pocket medical costs for the year exceed 10% of your income, you can deduct them! 10% may sound like a lot, but it’s not uncommon in the year your baby is born! Breastfeeding expenses can really add up, especially in your baby’s first year. Think breast pump/equipment, storage bags, nursing pads, prenatal/postnatal classes, lactation consults/workshops, trips to the pediatrician, etc. Even items like nipple creams and special bras may be applicable if used for medical reasons. See more here: IRS Guide on Medical Expenses.
3) Child-Tax Credit
This one has been around a while, but new parents may not be aware. As of 2021, for each dependent child, you may be eligible to take up to $3600 off your taxes. Boom. It’s basically that simple, but here are the details.
4) Child and Dependent Care Credit
If you qualify, you can claim between 20-50% of qualifying expenses related to having a care provider watch your child. The maximum amount of the credit is $8000 per child, with a $16,000 per family maximum. The care provider must be a person or organization with a social security or taxpayer ID number, and the lower your income, the higher the credit amount is. Read more about this credit here.
5) Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC)
The EITC helps low to moderate-income workers and families get a tax break. Claiming the credit can reduce the tax you owe and may also give you a larger refund. There are special qualifying rules for military and clergy, and those with certain disabilities. Check here to see if you qualify.
Of course, we aren’t accountants and there are specific rules and details that apply to these credits. We recommend you meet with a professional if possible, as parents often don’t know what is out there and available to them. Who knows, there may be even more breaks available to you!
Good luck, and happy taxing!
***The information provided on our website is intended solely for general educational and informational purposes only. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. Always seek the advice of your physician for any questions you may have regarding your or your child’s medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have received in this information.***