Submitted By: Fred
Answered: November 4, 2014 8:30 am

My wife is recuperating from an illness, and because I work long hours, I engaged a housekeeper to do chores. Her doctor advised her not to do chores until she’s recovered. Can I deduct the wages I pay to the housekeeper?

The cost of housekeeping services are never a deductible medical expense; only personal care services may be deductible under certain conditions. However, the cost of housekeeping services incurred to enable you to work may qualify for a dependent care tax credit. To be eligible for this credit, the nonworking spouse must be physically or mentally incapable of self-care. Whether your wife meets this condition is up to your doctor.

Tax Glossary

Declining balance method

A rapid depreciation method determined by a constant percentage based on useful life and applied to the adjusted basis of the property.

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