March 2, 2011

IRS Clarifies Lactation Expenses Qualify as Medical Care Expenses

The IRS recently issued an Announcement relating to the excludability of breast pumps and nursing equipment.  IRS Announcement 2011-14 affirms that the cost of breast pumps and lactation aids are deemed to be medical care under IRC §213(d) in that, “like obstetric care, they are used for the purpose of affecting a structure or function of the body”.  Therefore, expenses relating to breast pumps and lactation supplies are excludable from an employee’s income, and can be purchased with tax-favored dollars through a flexible medical spending account, a health reimbursement arrangement or a health savings account.  This ruling is consistent with the trend toward wellness, and general health and well-being.


The information contained in this Benefit Beat is not intended to be legal, accounting, or other professional advice, nor are these comments directed to specific situations.

As required by U.S. Treasury rules, we inform you that, unless expressly stated otherwise, any U.S. federal tax advice contained in this Benefit Beat is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, by any person for the purpose of avoiding any penalties that may be imposed by the Internal Revenue Service.

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