CLAIMING MEDICAL EXPENSES (Additional Medical Expenses Tax Credit)

What is it?

An Additional Medical Expenses Tax Credit (also known as an "AMTC") is a rebate which reduces the normal tax a person pays. This rebate is non-refundable and any portion that is not allowed in the current year can’t be carried over to the next year of assessment. It applies for years of assessment starting on or after 1 March 2014 (from the 2015 year of assessment) and is mostly calculated against qualifying "out of pocket" medical expenses paid for you and any dependant. It is a rebate given in addition to the medical scheme fees tax credit (MTC).  

What qualifies as out-of-pocket medical expenses?

These are amounts paid and not recovered during the year of assessment in respect of you or any dependant, and include:
  • Services rendered and medicines supplied by any duly registered medical practitioner, dentist, optometrist, homeopath, naturopath, osteopath, herbalist, physiotherapist, chiropractor or orthopaedist;
  • Hospitalisation in a registered hospital or nursing home;
  • Home nursing by a registered nurse, midwife or nursing assistant, including services supplied by any nursing agency;
  • Medicines prescribed by any duly registered physician (as listed above) and acquired from any duly registered pharmacist;
  • Expenditure incurred and paid outside South Africa in respect of services rendered or medicines supplied which are substantially similar to the services and medicines listed above;
  • Any qualifying expenses prescribed by the Commissioner as a result of any physical impairment or disability.

Who is a dependant?

A dependant is:
  • A spouse
  • A child and the child of a spouse (e.g. son, daughter, step son, step daughter, legally adopted child)
    • Who was alive during any portion of the year of assessment, and who on the last day of the year of assessment:
      • Was unmarried and was not or would not, had he or she lived, have been:
        • Older than 18 years
        • Older than 21 years and was entirely or partly dependent for maintenance on the person and has not become liable to pay normal tax for the year
        • Older than 26 years and was entirely or partly dependent for maintenance on the person and has not  become liable to pay normal tax for the year and was a full-time student at an educational institution of a public character; or
      • In the case of any other child, was incapacitated by a disability from maintaining himself or herself and was entirely or partly dependent for maintenance on the person and hasn’t become liable to pay normal tax for that year
  • Any other member of a person’s family for whom he or she is liable for family care and support (e.g. mother, father, mother-in-law, father-in-law, brother, sister, grandparents, grandchildren.)
  • Any other person who is recognised as a dependant of that person in terms of the rules of a registered medical scheme or fund.

Calculation of Additional Medical Expenses Tax Credit

The AMTC will depend on a person’s age and whether the person, his or her spouse or any of their dependant(s) has a disability as defined.

1. A person who is 65 years of age or older may claim the following AMTC:
Qualifying medical expenditure paid during the year of assessment, amounting to –
  • 33,3% of the fees paid to a medical scheme or qualifying foreign fund as exceeds three times the amount of the MTC to which that person is entitled; plus
  • 33,3% of the qualifying medical expenses paid (out-of-pocket expenses).
 
2. A person who is, or whose spouse or child is a person with a disability, may claim the following AMTC:
Qualifying medical expenditure paid during the year of assessment, amounting to –
  • 33,3% of the fees paid to a registered medical scheme (or similar qualifying foreign fund) as exceeds three times the amount of the MTC to which that person is entitled; plus
  • 33,3% of the qualifying medical expenses paid (out-of-pocket expenses).

Note that this concession is only available where the person, his or her spouse or child is a person with a disability. It is not available in respect of any other dependant with a disability (for example, the person’s mother).

3. All other persons not mentioned in the two categories above, may claim the following AMTC:

25% of the amount by which the sum of the amounts listed below exceeds 7,5% of the taxable income (excluding retirement fund lump sum benefits, retirement fund lump sum withdrawal benefits, and severance benefits) before taking into account this AMTC:

i)  All contributions paid by the person to a registered medical scheme (or similar qualifying foreign fund) in respect of the person and any of his or her dependants as exceeds four times the amount of the MTC to which that person is entitled; and

(ii)  Actual qualifying medical expenses (including physical impairment expenses) paid by the person and not recoverable from the medical scheme in respect of the person and any of his or her dependants.

For further information on how to calculate the AMTC, please refer to the Guide on the Determination of Medical Tax Credits.

Need help?

  • Call the SARS Contact Centre on 0800 00 SARS (7277)
  • Visit your nearest SARS branch.

To access this page in different languages click on the links below:

Last Updated: 27/06/2017 3:12 PM     print this page
SARS eFiling eFiling Login eFiling Register Now eFiling Forgot Password eFiling Forgot Username E@syFile
FIND A PUBLICATION
FIND A FORM
FIND AN FAQ