Tax Guide

Teachers Can Deduct COVID-19 Protective Items on Their Tax Returns

Teachers Can Deduct COVID-19 Protective Items on Their Tax Returns
Ines Zemelman, EA
08 February 2021

Last week, the IRS announced that from now on, all eligible educators can deduct out-of-pocket COVID-19 protective items that they use in a classroom in order to prevent the spread of the virus.

What are the protective items that teachers and other educators can deduct on their tax returns in 2021?

  • face masks
  • disinfectants
  • hand soap
  • hand sanitizer
  • disposable gloves
  • tape, paint, or chalk to guide social distancing
  • physical barriers (for example, clear plexiglass)
  • air purifiers
  • other items recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that help to prevent the spread of COVID-19

How much can I deduct on COVID-19 protective items?

According to Rev. Proc. 2021-15, you can include the expenses paid after March 12, 2020. Eligible educators can deduct up to $250 for qualifying expenses (or up to $500 if filing jointly and both spouses are educators, but any way up to $250 for each person.)

In what form can I claim the deduction?

To claim the deduction, you may use Form-1040, Form 1040-NR, or Form 1040-SR.

You might also be interested in the Stimulus check and if you are eligible for it. To find out, check out our Federal Stimulus Guide: we keep updating it, so you’ll learn more about the stimulus money and how to get it.

Ines Zemelman, EA
founder of Taxes for Expats