Claiming your refunds
You may or may not be eligible to claim for any of the following but they are worth mentioning.

Private Medical Insurance
Tax on maternity benefit
Claiming back medical expenses
Claiming back expenses from breast pumps and other accessories


Private Medical Insurance

If you have private medical insurance, we would suggest that you check out the terms & conditions of your plan to fully ascertain what you are entitled to claim for. Each of the three main providers Quinn, VHI & Viva, all have a number of plans where parents can claim costs for expenses incurred when a parent has a child in hospital.

These costs vary from accommodation, travel, food and childcare. To find out if you are eligible to claim for any of the above, contact your insurance provider.

Also some policies also allow you to claim on maternity bras, lactation specialists to help with breastfeeding, baby massage courses, and complementary therapies.

Tax on maternity benefit

Treatment of Maternity Benefit as outlined by Revenue - Maternity Benefit is not regarded as income for the purposes of the Income Tax Acts and should be disregarded for all tax purposes.

Whether the payment must be taken into account by the payroll office will depend on the particular circumstances or arrangements between employers and employees while employees are on maternity leave and in receipt of Maternity Benefit from the Department of Social & Family Affairs.

The treatment in specific situations is outlined below:

Employers who pay wages, salary, etc. to employees while out on maternity leave and recover the Maternity Benefit from the employees or directly from the Department of Social & Family Affairs. In such circumstances, only the difference between the wages, salary, etc. paid and the Maternity Benefit recovered is subject to tax and PRSI in the pay period.
Employers who pay wages, salary etc. to employees while out on maternity leave (top-up etc.) and the employees retain the Maternity Benefit.
Where an employer pays an employee full or partial wages or salary while out on maternity leave and the employee retains the Maternity Benefit, tax and PRSI should be charged only on the full amount of wages or salary actually paid.
Employers who do not pay wages, salary etc. to employees while out on maternity leave and the employee retains the Maternity Benefit.
If the employee is not entitled to any payment on the usual pay day, the employer, if requested by the employee or by someone acting on her behalf, should repay the appropriate amount of tax, having regard to her cumulative pay at that pay day and the corresponding cumulative tax. Alternatively, on the employee's return to work after a period of maternity leave, any refund of tax, which may be due to the employee, can be calculated having regard to his or her cumulative emoluments at the date of the pay day in question and the corresponding cumulative tax. In this situation the employer should contact the employee's local Revenue office to confirm that it is in order to make such a refund.

Of course an employer should not make a refund unless he/she are in possession of a current year cumulative Tax Credit Certificate in respect of the employee in question.

If Revenue confirms that you are eligible for a rebate, you need to request an MB21 form from the maternity benefit section. This document along with a P60 for the relevant tax year of the maternity leave should be sent to their local tax office to reclaim a tax rebate in relation to the maternity benefit. A refund of the relevant PRSI contributions can also be obtained by completing form PRSI REF 1 which is available at www.welfare.ie.

Claiming back medical expenses

If you have private medical insurance you can submit all receipts to your insurance company for a refund. You can also claim back from Revenue using the Med 1 form as outlined below. You may claim tax relief in respect of the cost of certain medical expenses paid by you. You cannot claim tax relief for any expenditure which:

has been, or will be, reimbursed by another body such as the VHI, Quinn Healthcare, Hibernian Aviva Health, the Health Service Executive or other body or person
has been, or will be, the subject of a compensation payment
relates to routine dental and ophthalmic care.
Further details on the main medical expenses that qualify for relief are given in the Items of Expense section. If you have a query regarding any medical expense, you may contact your Regional PAYE Lo Call Service.

Is there a time limit for making a claim?
Yes. A claim for tax relief must be made within 4 years after the end of the tax year to which the claim relates.

In respect of whom may I claim the tax relief?
Claims for up to and including the 2006 tax year:
For these tax years, you may claim tax relief in respect of health expenses incurred in respect of:

yourself and your spouse
your children (or any other children who, for the year of the claim, are in custody of and maintained by the claimant) who are under 18 years of age and for those over 18 years of age who are receiving full-time education
a relative of yours
a non-relative who is aged 65 years (or over) or who is permanently incapacitated by reason of mental or physical infirmity.
Claims for 2007 and subsequent tax years:
You may claim tax relief in respect of any qualifying health expenses paid by you in respect of any individual.

Can I claim tax relief on the full cost of the Health Expenses?
Yes, in respect of the 2007 and subsequent tax years. However, if your claim relates to any year up to and including 2006, the first €125 of your claim is disallowed where the expenses were incurred in respect of one person and €250 where expenses were incurred in respect of more than one person.

This relief is given at different tax rates, for more information, see http://www.revenue.ie/en/tax/it/leaflets/it6.html

Claiming back expenses from breast pumps and other accessories

You are able to claim back any nursing equipment (breast pumps etc) you hired or bought for your premature baby. We have been advised by Revenue that you will need a letter from the hospital stating that breast milk was what they recommend you give your premature baby and as a result, you had to purchase/rent a breast pump.

Revenue have confirmed this with Irish Premature Babies on the 12/03/10. They also recommended to check out their site, if you have any queries http://www.revenue.ie/en/tax/it/leaflets/it6.html

You can claim the above under the med 1 form under section (H) "Expenses incurred on any medical, surgical or nursing appliance".
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