IRS Allows Deductions for COVID-19 Protective Items

March 03, 2021 • Sarah James

IRS Allows Deductions for COVID-19 Protective Items

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) announced eligible educators may include COVID-19 protective items in the educator expense deduction.

Eligible educators include K–12 teachers, instructors, counselors, principals, or aides employed in a school for at least 900 hours during a school year. Educator expense deduction rules allow educators to deduct up to $250 of qualifying expenses per year. That amount may now include unreimbursed expenses for protective items intended to stop the spread of COVID-19 in the classroom, including:

  • Face masks
  • Disinfectant
  • Hand soap and sanitizer
  • Disposable gloves
  • Tape, paint, or chalk to guide social distancing
  • Physical barriers (e.g., plexiglass)
  • Air purifiers
  • Other items recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to be used to prevent the spread of COVID-19

Additional information, including links to tax forms and instructions, can be found in this IRS News Release.

Sarah James is a communications specialist at TASB HR Services. Send Sarah an email at

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