CLEVELAND, OH –Today, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) joined a northeast Ohio senior and tax preparer to call for action on his bipartisan legislation he reintroduced with Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) to prevent higher tax bills for seniors next spring.
- In January, the threshold to claim the medical expense tax deduction increased from 7.5 percent to 10 percent of an individual’s income.
- If Brown and Portman’s bill, The Senior Tax Hike Prevention Act, doesn’t pass before the end of the year, seniors with high healthcare costs could feel a significant tax hike when they file taxes next spring.
“High healthcare costs shouldn’t leave seniors making the impossible decision between putting gas in the car or food on the table and filling needed prescriptions,” said Brown. “Deducting the cost of going to the doctor and buying expensive prescription drugs is a bipartisan solution to help relieve the cost of healthcare for seniors.”
Brown was joined at the press conference by Ellen Markell, a northeast Ohio senior who has used the medical expense tax deduction in the past.
“I can personally vouch for what an important lifeline the deduction can be, and raising the bar on the current threshold could put that lifeline out of reach for Ohioans. As the next tax filing season approaches, I’m hopeful that Congress takes action on this commonsense fix to protect folks like me from higher taxes,” said Ms. Markell.
Brown was also joined by Jeanette Smith, a northeast Ohio tax preparer.
“Before next filing season, we have a chance to reverse course on this tax increase and do the right thing for our seniors. Senator Brown and Senator Portman’s bipartisan bill is an important step in protecting seniors and all Americans facing high medical expenses,” said Ms. Smith.
AARP has also endorsed Brown and Portman’s legislation, saying the bill would help older Americans facing high healthcare costs.
“AARP supports this bipartisan bill that would help older Americans who face high health care costs,” said AARP CEO Jo Ann Jenkins. “We hope to see Congress follow the lead of Senators Brown and Portman by enacting legislation to prevent a tax hike on seniors with high medical costs.”