Tax allowances and other schemes

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Income tax

Incapacitated Child Tax Credit may be claimed by a parent or guardian of a child who has a permanent disability whether physical or intellectual and is permanently incapacitated from maintaining him/herself independently in the long term. The conditions are that the child must have become incapacitated (1) before the age of 21 or (2) after age 21 whilst still in full‐time education or training for a trade/profession for a minimum of 2 years. Apply to the revenue commissioners with medical evidence such as a doctor’s letter. Qualifying disabilities include Cystic Fibrosis, Blindness, Deafness, Downs syndrome, Spastic Paralysis, Acute Autism, certain forms of Schizophrenia. If the disability can be corrected by treatment the child is not considered permanently incapacitated so children whose epilepsy is controlled/controllable by medication would not be eligible unless they have another qualifying disability. If a child has epilepsy which is considered refractory or intractable the parent/guardian may apply for consideration for this credit. The list of disabilities above is not exhaustive. See www.revenue.ie

Allowance for Employing a Carer for an Incapacitated Person

This allowance is up to €50,000 at your highest tax rate is available where a carer is employed to care for a person with a disability including a child. One or more family members of the person being cared for can claim the allowance. see www.revenue.ie

Home Carers Tax Credit may be available to married couples who are jointly assessed where one spouse is a home carer for a dependent child or children (for whom Child benefit is paid) or for a person over 65, or someone who is permanently incapacitated. There are limits applicable to the level of income of the home carer.

Dependent Relative Tax Credit

This credit of may be available to a person who maintains a relative who has a disability ‐ subject to a maximum income level.

Health Expenses (FORM MED 1)

The level of tax relief which will be allowable on Medical expenses is 20% relief. You may claim tax relief on certain medical expenses that you have already not claimed for from private health insurance, these include the cost of doctor’s visits, hospital and nursing home charges, prescription charges, certain specified equipment, educational assessment and therapy.And it is no longer confined to defined relatives, spouse, dependent child etc. Claims may be submitted for the preceding four tax years only. For full details of all the above allowable reliefs and the conditions attached see www.revenue.ie or phone your regional revenue district.

HSE schemes and charges

The Drug Payment Scheme is available to ensure that the cost of prescription medicines for each family do not exceed a certain limit each month. Although people with epilepsy receive free medication on the Long Term Illness Scheme they do have to pay for prescriptions for some other conditions if they don’t qualify for a medical card. The threshold is €124 as the maximum payable by families registered for the scheme per month. Apply to your local HSE centre to register for the scheme. Payments made under the scheme may be allowable against income tax.

Hospital charges Patient bed charges are €80 per night for a maximum of €800 per year. Accident & Emergency charges are €100.00 for persons without a medical card or GP referral letter. In cases of hardship a person may write to the patient accounts department of the hospital to explain their situation.

For more information see www.hse.ie

Local authority grants

Local Authority House Adaptation Grants for People with Disabilities If you require adaptations to be made to your home on account of your epilepsy you may apply for a grant from your local authority for all or part of the cost. The types of work covered are usually at the level of modification of bathrooms to include showers but may extend to provision of ground level bathroom/bedroom. An Occupational Therapist report recommending such adaptations is essential. Contact your local authority for more information.

Compiled with the assistance of information from:

Citizens Information ‐ www.citizensinformation.ie
Dept. of Social Protection ‐ www.welfare.ie
Revenue ‐ www.revenue.ie