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Make Fitness a Tax Deduction With the PHIT Act

marathon runnerThe clever acronym PHIT stands for The Personal Health Investment Today Act of 2009. The PHIT Act was introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives last spring, and is intended to amend the IRS code to allow fitness-related tax deductions for up to $1,000 for individuals, or $2,000 for married couples filing jointly or heads of household.

But, only certain sports and fitness expenses qualify. The PHIT Act defines qualified activities as amounts paid for fitness center memberships, physical exercise programs, and exercise equipment.

Here are some of the expenses that are covered:

  • Youth camp and physical activity fees
  • Membership fees for a health club
  • Exercise/fitness classes or personal trainer’s instruction
  • Sports league fees (any age)
  • Marathon/triathlon registration fees
  • Equipment used exclusively for participation in physical exercise/activities

Expenses that are not included are:

  • Expenses incurred from member-owned and operated private clubs
  • Clubs that offer golf, hunting, sailing and horseback riding
  • Apparel and footwear not used exclusively for physical activity
  • Travel and accommodation expenses incurred while participating in physical activity

ronald kindAny incentive to have our citizens get healthier is a fantastic idea. The act is sponsored by Rep. Ronald Kind (D) of Wisconsin. His co-sponsors in the House of Representatives include:

Tammy Baldwin (D) of Wisconsin
Joe Barton (R) of Texas
Earl Blumenauer (D) of Oregon
Kevin Brady (TX) of Texas
Robert Brady (D) of Pennsylvania
Christopher Carney (D) of Pennsylvania
Jim Gerlach (R) of Pennsylvania
John Gingrey (R) of Georgia
Marcy Kaptur (D) of Ohio
Mike McIntyre (D) of North Carolina
Jerry Moran (R) of Kansas
Donald Payne (D) of New Jersey
Todd Platts (R) of Pennsylvania
Zach Wamp (R) of Tennessee
Robert Wexler (D) of Florida

Contact your congressman to show your support for the Personal Health Investment Today Act of 2009 (PHIT Act or HR 2105)!


September 11th, 2009

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Bill Toner

I think it would be a great step forward allowing tax payers to deduct Fitness Club membership fees if they showed the membership was being used regularly. I would think this would be a win win situation as it would probably reduce many health care expenses for insurance companies. Insurance companies could in return for reduced expenses possibly donate back to some sort of good health promotions or programs etc. I just feel like this would be getting to the root of the problem vs. dealing with the aftermath. Plus a tax deductible incentive may be just the exta boost needed for many people to get motivated. If this worked health insurance expenses would be reduced resulting in lower rates for businesses and individuals. A boost in profits for fitness club business & insurance companies would also create taxable income & offset the tax deduction given by the IRS. Best of all a reduction in the overweight American epidemic. The benefits go on and on. Does anyone see the downside to this besides the healthcare industry losing billions in revenue? Im sure the loss of taxable income generated by the health care industry could not be replaced by increased Fitness club & health program etc. revenues, but would this be such a bad thing? Would our economy crash without our very own dependence on excessive overpriced healthcare?

Political Deliberation is a forum on political topics by use of an un-censored, non-biased discussion board.

posted Oct 28th, 2009 2:32 pm


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