Claiming Medical Tax Credits from SARS

SARS-medical-aid claimIf you contribute to a medical aid each month, you may be aware that you’re entitled to a tax credit – but how do you go about claiming it?

What can you claim back?

The SARS regulations on medical tax credits change from time to time, and at the moment you are allowed to claim back money you have spent on the following expenses:

  • Medical aid contributions
  • Medical expenses that aren’t covered by your medical aid
  • Hospital bills, optometrists fees, and dentist’s fees

How much can you claim?

As you might expect, SARS has certain limits on how much you’ll be able to claim for every type of medical expense. At the moment, you can claim up to:

  •  R242 per month for your own medical aid contribution
  •  R242 for the first dependant on your medical aid scheme
  •  R162 per month for each extra dependant on your scheme

These amounts apply to medical aid contributions – in other words, the premium you pay to your medical aid each month. This could be your contribution to a staff medical aid (where your employer pays part of the total premium) or a medical aid scheme you took out in your private capacity.

Tax credits for out-of-pocket expenses

No matter how comprehensive your medical aid cover is, you’ll always have some medical expenses that you pay for using your own money.

SARS gives you a chance to claim some of these out-of-pocket expenses back. Here are some examples of the expenses SARS will allow you to claim:

  • Hospitalisation at a registered hospital or nursing home
  • Prescribed medication bought at a pharmacy
  • Treatment received from most medical professionals – including doctors, dentists, optometrists, orthodontists, chiropractors, physiotherapists, homeopaths and others.
  • Home nursing – by a registered nurse
  • Medical expenses of the above types which were paid for overseas during a trip

If you’re over 65…

Good news for retired people is that citizens over 65 are entitled to claim the full value of their medical aid contributions and medical expenses.

This means that the majority of retired people can expect to receive the full value of their medical expenses back from SARS. The same applies to disabled people under 65, whose health tax credits aren’t capped.

If you’re in any doubt as to how much you can claim in medical tax credits, speak to your financial advisor today.

19 thoughts on “Claiming Medical Tax Credits from SARS

  1. I have submitted my tax today and received a sms that -R0.18 due to you. I have ±R5700 out of pocket medical expenses. I don’t understand how this medical tax credits work

    • The downside of filling in your own tax return, is that you will have to communicate with SARS to see why this is so. Had you used a Tax practitioner, it would have been their responsibility. I am not able to tell you why so little is due to you.

  2. Hello! I would just like to know why I don’t receive anything back when I do my taxes? Pay more than 30000 a year on medical aid but never get anything? Is it possible 2 do this year’s and look at previous years aswell? Thank you for your time

    • The problem about trying to do your own taxes, is that should an issue arise, you do not know why. I am afraid there could be a number of reasons why you did not get a refund. Without access to your files, a guess is difficult. Why do you not appoint a Tax Practitioner to investigate and explain what is happening?

  3. A SA citizen lives in Auckland, New Zealand. He has a rental property in Cape Town, so we submit a tax return. If he has medical aid in NZ, does he qualify for the SA tax deduction, or is it limited to a SA medical aid.

  4. i am 76 years of age and would like to know what percentage of my medical costs can i claim from SARS.My total annual costs are about
    R60,300-00 which I have full proof of.

  5. Hi Nico

    Can you tell me what is the % that can be claimed on the year end total of the
    Tax credits for out-of-pocket medical expenses ?

    • The payer gets a tax credit for each person for which she is paying. Any out of pocket payments are subject to an extremely complicated formula which is based on your age, disability status and actual premiums paid. It is no longer a simple formula as it was in previous years.

      One gets the impression that the new formula considerably reduces SARS contribution towards your costs. You do not provide me with sufficient information to give you a more specific answer.

  6. Hi my name is Simon i was working for a company for 4 years being taxed now im not working. I want to clarify that what document i must use to apply for tax claim?

  7. I submitted my tax, and i did it wrong since there was incorrect information i gave. Now sars asked for supporting documents of which i did not have. they ended up doing additional assessment of which resulted in 0 fund. Now, I requested sars to allow me to do my return again, coz I have medical contribution and I believe i deserve to get money back. should I continue or not?

    • Shiela, I cannot advise you since I do not know enough about how much you spent on Medical expenses, whether this qualifies ect. It is better that in future you use a Tax Practitioner. They will charge, but SARS will now demand documentation and you may have to visit them more than once. Do not ignore SARS. They have long memories.

  8. Hi. I am not working for over 3years but I am paying medical aid on my name . I have a dependant also, my daughter. . Do I qualify for tax refund

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