Tax return: deduct health insurance costs correctly
Dental appointments, operations, therapies: healthcare costs can put a strain on the budget – but they’re also partly tax deductible. How tax deduction for health insurance costs works.
Tax deductions are regulated by canton
Basically, a distinction is made between deductions for insurance premiums and those for healthcare costs such as doctors’ appointments, operations or medication. In Switzerland, these tax deductions are regulated on a cantonal basis. This means that in the canton of Zurich, regulations and options differ from those in Bern or Lausanne.
At the end of January each year, your health insurance company sends you a tax statement. It lists all the premiums and costs you’ve paid in the previous year. The tax statement makes it easier to fill in your tax return and enables healthcare costs to be deducted.
Deduct expenses from taxes
If you have high dental costs or a high retention fee, you should check to see if a deduction can be made on your tax return.
Can I deduct health insurance premiums from my taxes?
Both basic and supplementary insurance premiums are deducted through the general standard deduction for insurance premiums – which also includes premiums for life and pension insurance. Don’t forget to claim child deduction. The general deduction increases with each child eligible for deduction.
Which general healthcare costs are usually deductible?
The following services or their costs can be deducted from taxes, provided the amounts were invoiced in the tax year:
- medical treatment by doctors and recognised naturopaths
- costs for medication prescribed by a doctor
- aids such as glasses, contact lenses, hearing aids, prostheses
- care costs such as Spitex, old people's homes and nursing homes
- costs for diets, if prescribed by a doctor
- breast reduction in case of health impairment (e.g. back pain)
- costs of hormone treatments, artificial insemination, in vitro fertilisation
Can dental costs also be deducted?
Yes. You can deduct expenses for dental treatment, dental correction, dental hygiene and dental technology.
Are the costs of complementary and alternative medicine tax-deductible?
Yes. You can deduct natural medical treatments by recognised naturopaths and therapists from your taxes.
What expenses can't be deducted from my taxes?
The following healthcare and insurance costs are generally not tax-deductible:
- cosmetic surgery
- teeth bleaching
- wellness and fitness
- car, liability, household contents, travel and property insurance
Filling in your tax return
Deduct medical expenses and health insurance premiums correctly. The following tips will help you fill in your tax return.
Tax statement for health insurance: order a statement for health insurance premiums and costs handled by the health insurance company (unless it comes automatically).
Medical certificate: for physiotherapy, massages, speech therapy et al, be sure to enclose the patient’s medical certificate if the costs were not paid by your health insurance.
Vouchers and receipts: collect and submit all receipts – this is tedious but can be worthwhile.
Don't forget: deduct dental or optical (glasses) costs as well as expenses for children and submit receipts.