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Take my wife, please.

If you own a small business and file a Schedule C, you might be able to include health insurance as a business deduction. If your spouse works for the company on a part-time basis, you can pay him or her a nominal salary, with the extra benefit of full family health insurance coverage.

In one step you accomplish two goals: You put your spouse to work, and you get full health insurance--medical and dental, if desired--as a 100% covered benefit. Without spousal employment, you only receive a 70% health insurance credit, for a 30% tax savings, instead of the full write off on Schedule C and lower social security taxes. Spouses actually have to work to earn the nominal salary. A $1,000 token annual salary with a $10,000 health insurance benefit might be reasonable payment for someone who works six hours a week.--Howard Scott is a business writer and small business tax preparer in Pembroke, Mass.


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Title Annotation:Tax Tips
Author:Scott, Howard
Date:Sep 1, 2003
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