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Most Popular Questions

Are dependent care expenses paid with a DCFSA tax deductible?

You are not permitted to claim the same expenses on both your federal income taxes and Dependent Care FSA (DCFSA), although in certain situations you may be able to take advantage of both the DCFSA and the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit.

If you have two or more qualifying individuals as dependents, the IRS allows you to apply up to $6,000 of dependent care expenses to your taxes. The maximum allowable under a DCFSA is $5,000, so you may apply the $1,000 incremental difference between the DCFSA maximum and the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit if you have two or more dependents and your expenses exceed $5,000. The chart below helps to illustrate:

DCFSA Federal Tax Credit
One Dependent $5,000 $3,000
Two or More Dependents $5,000 $6,000

Please note: For the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, which is different than your DCFSA, you may use up to $3,000 of the expenses paid in a year for one qualifying individual, or $6,000 for two or more qualifying individuals. These dollar limits must be reduced by the amount of any dependent care benefits that you exclude from your income.

To determine which option is best for you, please seek guidance from your tax advisor.