What are the ways senior citizens can utilize medical bills to save tax under Section 80D?

What are the ways senior citizens can utilize medical bills to save tax under Section 80D?

Investing in a comprehensive health insurance plan is essential to manage the financial burden of healthcare expenses during old age. Such a plan covers the costs of regular medical care and unforeseen emergencies, alleviating the strain on finances. Additionally, premiums paid towards health insurance can provide tax savings for senior citizens under section 80D.

For senior citizens facing challenges in obtaining affordable health insurance due to underlying health conditions or pre-existing diseases, there’s an alternative to save income tax. They can claim tax deductions on medical expenses, provided the payment is made through non-cash modes.

Deduction Limit Under Section 80D

Section 80D of the Income Tax Act emphasizes tax deductions for health insurance premiums and medical expenses incurred by individuals or families. These deductions aim to incentivize investment in health insurance and alleviate the financial burden of medical costs. Notably, only payments made through non-cash modes are eligible for 80D deductions; cash payments are not permissible. The table below illustrates the deduction limits under Section 80D.

An individual who pays the premium Limit of Tax Deduction for Non-Senior Citizens Limit of Tax Deduction on Premium for Senior Citizens Maximum Tax Deduction Limit under Section 80D
If the premium is paid by an individual classified as a senior citizen NA ₹50,000 ₹50,000
If the premium is paid by a non-senior citizen for themselves, their spouse, children, and senior citizen parents. ₹25,000 ₹50,000 ₹75,000
If the premium is paid by a senior citizen for themselves, their spouse, children, and senior citizen parents. ₹50,000 ₹50,000 ₹1,00,000

Eligible Medical Expenses for Section 80D Deductions

Individuals or families are eligible to claim deductions for the subsequent medical expenses.

Preventive Health Checkups

Under section 80D, expenses incurred for preventive health checkups are eligible for a deduction of up to ₹5000. This deduction is part of the overall deduction limit of ₹50,000 for senior citizens and ₹25,000 for non-senior citizens. It's important to note that cash payments are permissible for preventive checkups.

Medical bills/expenses

Under section 80D, medical expenses are also eligible for deductions up to ₹50,000 for senior citizens who do not possess a health insurance policy. These expenses comprise consultation fees, medication bills, expenses for hearing aids, pacemakers, or any other medical devices.

Medical conditions or diseases as outlined in the Income Tax Act

Under section 80DDB, specific medical conditions or diseases are enumerated, allowing deductions of up to ₹1 lakh for senior citizens and up to ₹40,000 for non-senior citizens. These ailments comprise neurological diseases, cancer, AIDS, among others. For illnesses not mentioned in section 80DDB, deductions can be claimed under section 80D.

Central Government Health Scheme (CGHS) Contributions

Contributions made to CGHS or any other notified scheme are eligible for section 80D income tax deduction of up to ₹25,000 if paid by the senior citizen. Payments made for parents are not eligible for tax deductions.

Ways to Save Income Tax for Senior Citizens

  • Invest in a comprehensive health insurance plan to encompass various medical expenses. Such plans offer substantial premium limits for tax deductions, thereby aiding in optimizing your savings.
  • If you have dependent parents, covering their health insurance expenses can additionally lower your tax liability and contribute to tax savings.
  • Always ensure to claim deductions for preventive health checkups.
  • If you contribute partially towards your parent’s health insurance premium, both you and your parent can avail tax benefits.
  • Senior citizens aged 80 years and above qualify for increased deductions, allowing you to leverage this advantage to maximize your tax savings if you have parents in the same age bracket.
  • In the event of a lump sum payment for a multi-year health insurance policy premium, deductions can be claimed proportionately under section 80D. For instance, if you buy a 2-year policy and make a lump sum payment of ₹40,000, you can claim a deduction of ₹20,000 each year for the 2-year period under section 80D.


Investing in health insurance is essential for addressing the healthcare needs of senior citizens while alleviating their financial strain. Utilizing section 80D deductions can further ease the burden of medical expenses, including premium payments and healthcare bills, helping senior citizens save on income tax. When filing income tax returns for the upcoming financial year, it’s important to remember to claim medical expenses. While section 80D does not specify required documents for claiming tax benefits, it’s advisable to maintain records of all medical bills, diagnostic reports, and medical history as supporting documentation. Additionally, keeping track of premium payments and medical expenditures ensures maximum benefit from tax deductions.