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Care level and tax return

Caring for someone in need of care costs a lot of time - and, above all, a lot of money. Through financial subsidies from long-term care insurance, e.g. B. in the form of care allowance or care benefits in kind, caring relatives can be relieved. But how can a care level also be claimed in the tax return?

If a family member needs care, it is often relatives who take on care tasks. Depending on the degree of need for care, caregiving relatives can also be supported by an outpatient care service.

It is only in the course of time that it becomes noticeable that care is also associated with high costs: In addition to the time invested in care and supply, special furniture has to be purchased, the apartment has to be converted, and care aids and consumables have to be purchased.

If the person in need of care receives one of the five care levels (see also care levels and care levels), part of the monthly costs for care is covered by the long-term care insurance.

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The person in need of care then receives, for example, a monthly care allowance, which he can pass on in whole or in part to his relatives. It is intended as financial compensation for private carers who take care of someone in need of care in their free time. Anyone who takes care of a relative in need of care is also entitled to tax breaks.

In this article you will find out what the so-called care flat rate is all about and under what conditions care costs with a care level (a care level) can be entered in the tax return (and deducted from the tax).

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Deduct care costs from tax

Under certain conditions, care costs can be deducted from tax. Both those in need of care and caregivers are entitled to deduct income tax. Depending on the degree of relationship between the person in need of care and a carer, the care allowance may have to be stated and taxed in the tax return despite the care level.

The following are tax deductible under certain conditions:

  • The care allowance as a monthly benefit from long-term care insurance
  • Household services
  • Supplementary care insurance
  • Medicines and care aids
  • Hospitalization and placement in a nursing home

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What is the flat-rate care fee?

In tax law, a fixed, agreed flat rate is referred to as the flat-rate maintenance fee. This is intended to give family carers (or other private caregivers) tax relief up to a certain amount. The flat-rate care fee is 924 euros per calendar year and can be used under certain conditions:

  • The person in need of care does not only have to be in need of care, but also “helpless”, so under no circumstances have to be able to cope with everyday life on their own.
  • The person in need of care must show care level 4 or 5 or the mark “H”.
  • The care must be carried out in the own home of the person in need of care or the carer.
  • The family carer does not receive anything in return for the care.

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If these requirements are met, the flat-rate care fee can be stated in the tax return. However, if the care is shared among several people, the lump sum must also be shared between them. For example, if several relatives care for a family member in need of care, each of them receives only part of the care lump sum.

In order to benefit from the full amount of the lump sum, there may only be one carer. Making use of the flat-rate care amount can be worthwhile in the tax return, as long as the actual costs for care are comparatively low. However, if the carer's annual costs exceed 924 euros, it does not make sense to apply for the lump sum.

In this case, the actual costs should be stated as so-called "extraordinary burdens". You can find out more about extraordinary loads further down in this article.

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Can care allowance be deducted from tax?

If a family carer receives the monthly care allowance (or a portion of it) as compensation for his or her time and effort, he or she cannot claim the flat-rate care allowance. The degree of care or the former care level can (and should) be stated in the tax return.

In this case, the care allowance is regarded as income, so it must be noted in the income tax return. However, it does not have to be taxed (if there is a direct family relationship), so that the family carer still benefits from tax relief.

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The person in need of care is not obliged to pass the care allowance on to relatives. He can also use it himself for care expenses, e.g. B. for an everyday companion or aids that make everyday life easier. Since the care allowance is understood as a social benefit in this case, the person in need of care, if they benefit from the care allowance themselves, does not have to pay tax on it.

Family relationships are not absolutely necessary in order to claim the care allowance as a caregiver for tax purposes: If a friend or acquaintance feels obliged to take care of the care for moral or moral reasons, a close, amicable relationship between the caregiver and the person in need of care may be sufficient.

The moral obligation can even be confirmed by the tax office in order to avoid arbitrary refusals of a tax exemption.

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Who has to declare care allowance as subject to tax in the tax return?

Not all persons come under the privilege of tax-free care allowance. If you are not listed in the previous section, you must state the care allowance as income in your income tax return. This applies inter alia. for people who are neither related to the person in need of care nor in a close personal relationship with them.

Even those who provide care on a gainful basis and are employed as a caregiver with an employment contract must pay taxes on the income generated with care. This applies to both private individuals, e.g. B. Relatives who receive more than just the care allowance as payment, as well as nurses.

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Deduct care costs as extraordinary burdens from the tax

If the costs for care exceed a so-called “reasonable burden limit”, they can be deducted from the tax under the item “extraordinary burdens”. However, there is no generally applicable number for this: The tax office checks in each individual case the amount of financial burdens that are considered exceptional.

The basis for this calculation is the total amount of income, the marital status and the number of children of the taxpayer.

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The following costs can possibly be deducted from the tax as extraordinary burdens:

  • Medicines, unless they are covered by health insurance
  • Aids, e.g. B. prostheses, wheelchairs or walking aids
  • Hospital stays, unless they are covered by health insurance
  • Accommodation in a nursing home, unless this is covered by long-term care insurance
  • Maintenance costs, e.g. B. for an outpatient care service that is not covered by long-term care insurance
  • Nursing and illness-related conversions in the living quarters of the person in need of care, e.g. B. stair lifts, shower seats or the conversion of the bathtub

Our team will be happy to advise you free of charge and without obligation on the topic of care level and tax returns or on all other questions relating to care

Our nursing experts from Dr. Weigl & Partner will be happy to answer any open questions about the care level (care level) and tax return. We are also happy to help you with the application for care benefits or if you or your relative need retrospective financial support for care. We support you with bureaucratic matters and all other questions about maintenance. Also in the event that the first application was rejected and you want to contradict the level of care or the previous care situation has worsened since the last assessment by the Medical Service of the Health Insurance (MDK) and you want to increase the level of care, we will be happy to help you in these processes.

Our first telephone consultation is free of charge. We are looking forward to your contact!

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