You can generally deduct premiums you pay for the following kinds of insurance related to your business.
- Fire, theft, flood, or similar insurance.
- Credit insurance that covers losses from business bad debts.
- Group hospitalization and medical insurance for employees, including long-term care insurance.
- Liability insurance.
- Malpractice insurance that covers your personal liability for professional negligence resulting in injury or damage to patients or clients.
- Workers' compensation insurance set by state law that covers any claims for bodily injuries or job-related diseases suffered by employees in your business, regardless of fault.
- Contributions to a state unemployment insurance fund are deductible as taxes if they are considered taxes under state law.
- Overhead insurance that pays for business overhead expenses you have during long periods of disability caused by your injury or sickness.
- Car and other vehicle insurance that covers vehicles used in your business for liability, damages, and other losses. If you operate a vehicle partly for personal use, deduct only the part of the insurance premium that applies to the business use of the vehicle. If you use the standard mileage rate to figure your car expenses, you cannot deduct any car insurance premiums.
- Life insurance covering your employees if you are not directly or indirectly the beneficiary under the contract.
- Business interruption insurance that pays for lost profits if your business is shut down due to a fire or other cause.
You cannot deduct premiums on the following kinds of insurance.
- Self-insurance reserve funds. You cannot deduct amounts credited to a reserve set up for self-insurance. This applies even if you cannot get business insurance coverage for certain business risks. However, your actual losses may be deductible. For more information, see Publication 547, Casualties, Disasters, and Thefts.
- Loss of earnings. You cannot deduct premiums for a policy that pays for your lost earnings due to sickness or disability. However, see item (8) in the previous list.
- Certain life insurance and annuities.
- For contracts issued before June 9, 1997, you cannot deduct the premiums on a life insurance policy covering you, an employee, or any person with a financial interest in your business if you are directly or indirectly a beneficiary of the policy. You are included among possible beneficiaries of the policy if the policy owner is obligated to repay a loan from you using the proceeds of the policy. A person has a financial interest in your business if the person is an owner or part owner of the business or has lent money to the business.
- For contracts issued after June 8, 1997, you generally cannot deduct the premiums on any life insurance policy, endowment contract, or annuity contract if you are directly or indirectly a beneficiary. The disallowance applies without regard to whom the policy covers.
- Insurance to secure a loan. If you take out a policy on your life or on the life of another person with a financial interest in your business to get or protect a business loan, you cannot deduct the premiums as a business expense. Nor can you deduct the premiums as interest on business loans or as an expense of financing loans. In the event of death, the proceeds of the policy are not taxed as income even if they are used to liquidate the debt.
You may be able to deduct the amount you paid for medical and dental insurance and qualified long-term care insurance for you and your family. taxmap/pubs/p334-026.htm#en_us_publink100025353
Generally, you can use the worksheet in the Form 1040 instructions to figure your deduction. However, if any of the following apply, you must use the worksheet in chapter 6 of Publication 535.
- You have more than one source of income subject to self-employment tax.
- You file Form 2555 or Form 2555-EZ (relating to foreign earned income).
- You are using amounts paid for qualified long-term care insurance to figure the deduction.
You cannot deduct expenses in advance, even if you pay them in advance. This rule applies to any expense paid far enough in advance to, in effect, create an asset with a useful life extending substantially beyond the end of the current tax year.taxmap/pubs/p334-026.htm#en_us_publink100025355
In 2008, you signed a 3-year insurance contract. Even though you paid the premiums for 2008, 2009, and 2010 when you signed the contract, you can only deduct the premium for 2008 on your 2008 tax return. You can deduct in 2009 and 2010 the premium allocable to those years.taxmap/pubs/p334-026.htm#en_us_publink100025356
For more information about deducting insurance, see chapter 6 in Publication 535.