Tax season will be coming up soon for Malaysians making an income of at least RM34,000 for the Year of Assessment (YA) 2021.
Those who have received their Income Tax Return (EA) Form can do this on the ezHASiL portal by logging in or registering for the first time.
Amendments in tax reliefs have been made this YA 2021, and some new additions have also been introduced to lighten Malaysians’ financial burdens brought on by the extended pandemic. Claiming these incentives can help you lower your tax rate and pay less in overall taxes.
With that, here’s LHDN’s full list of tax reliefs for YA 2021.
Self, parents, and spouse
1. Automatic individual relief: RM9,000
You’re eligible for an automatic tax deduction of RM9,000 just by filling in the LHDN e-Filing form. As the name suggests, this will be done automatically by the system.
2. Further education fees (self): ≤RM7,000
A tax relief of up to RM7,000 is claimable if you’re paying for your own further education at a recognised higher learning institution in Malaysia. Here are the criteria:
- Any course of study at a Master’s or Doctorate level is eligible for this relief.
- Only courses in law, accounting, Islamic financing, technical, vocational, industrial, scientific, or technology are claimable for undergraduate degrees or lower.
- Any courses of study taken on for upskilling or self-enhancement purposes are claimable, but only up to RM1,000. Such courses must be recognised under the National Skills Development Act 2006.
3. Spouses & alimonies: ≤RM4,000
Those who pay alimony to their ex-wives are eligible for an RM4,000 relief, but only if there are formal agreements to back this up.
4. Medical expenses for parents: ≤RM8,000
You can claim up to RM8,000 if your parents have a medical condition requiring specific treatment proven by a certified medical practitioner.
It includes any expenses incurred for medical treatments, special needs, and caretaker expenses.
5. Medical expenses for self, spouse, or child: ≤RM8,000
You can claim up to RM8,000 for yourself, your spouse, or children undergoing medical treatments for serious or difficult to treat diseases. These illnesses include AIDS, Multiple Sclerosis, kidney failure, Alzheimer’s Disease, chronic liver disease, heart attack, major organ transplant, etc.
Fertility treatments like IVF or IUI undergone by married couples are also claimable under this category.
Furthermore, up to RM1,000 in relief is dedicated to a full medical checkup for yourself, spouse, or child. Such checkups include COVID-19 screenings or vaccination expenses against diseases including:
- Human papillomavirus (HPV);
- TDAP combination (tetanus-diphtheria-acellular-pertussis);
The total relief amount was raised by RM2,000 from YA 2020’s RM6,000 in this category.
6. Equipment for disabled self, spouse, child, or parent: ≤RM6,000
A tax relief limited to RM6,000 is available for purchases of special support equipment for yourself, your spouse, children, or parents who are disabled.
Disabled individuals would need to be registered with the Department of Social Welfare (JKM) and be certified as OKU.
7. Disabled individual (Self): RM6,000
Disabled persons registered under JKM are eligible for a further deduction of RM6,000 under this relief.
8. Disabled spouse: RM5,000
Those with a disabled spouse are entitled to an RM5,000 deduction. This is an increase from YA 2020’s RM3,500 in this category.
9. Disabled children
Disabled child relief: RM6,000
A tax relief of RM6,000 is eligible for parents with an unmarried child who’s physically or mentally disabled, regardless of their age. Children must be certified by JKM as a disabled person.
Disabled child aged 18 and above pursuing higher education: RM8,000
An additional exemption of RM8,000 is applicable for an unmarried disabled child receiving a full-time education in Malaysia or overseas. This deduction is an add-on to the disabled child relief if they are:
- Pursuing a higher education full-time for a diploma or higher in Malaysia;
- Undergoing a full-time Bachelor’s degree programme or above outside Malaysia;
- Serving under indentures or articles to qualify in a trade or profession in Malaysia.
10. Lifestyle purchases for self, spouse, or child: ≤RM2,500
A tax relief of up to RM2,500 is deductible for purchases of lifestyle equipment for personal use by yourself, your spouse, or children. Items include:
- Reading materials like books, journals, magazines, printed and e-newspapers, and other publications for the purpose of knowledge enrichment;
- A personal computer, smartphone, or tablet;
- Gym memberships or sports equipment;
- Internet bills under your own name.
11. Additional lifestyle purchases
Extra relief for tech: ≤RM2,500
As online education and WFH extended amidst 2021’s MCO, an additional RM2,500 in lifestyle relief is claimable if you’ve purchased a personal computer, smartphone, or tablet within YA 2021.
Extra relief for sports activities: RM500
There is also an additional RM500 relief for any purchase of sports equipment, rental or entrance fees to any sports facilities, and registration fees for any sports competitions.
12. Breastfeeding equipment: ≤RM1,000
Mothers who are breastfeeding a child aged 2 years and below can deduct up to RM1,000 in reliefs if they’ve purchased personal breastfeeding equipment.
This deduction can only be made once in every 2 years of assessment.
13. Childcare fees: ≤RM3,000
Parents with children in daycare centres or kindergartens can claim a tax relief limited to RM3,000.
If the couple chooses to file separately, this deduction can only be claimed by either the child’s mother or father.
14. SSPN: ≤RM8,000
SSPN (Skim Simpanan Pendidikan Nasional) is a savings plan that encourages parents to invest in their children’s higher education.
Parents who’ve contributed are eligible for a relief of up to RM8,000 for their annual net savings (total deposit in 2021 minus total withdrawal in 2021).
15. Unmarried child under 18: RM2,000
Parents can get a tax relief of RM2,000 for each unmarried child of theirs under 18 years old. For parents filing separately, this deduction can only be claimed by either the child’s mother or father.
16. Child aged 18 and above pursuing a full-time education
Child aged 18 and above in Pre-U Courses: RM2,000
RM2,000 can be deducted for parents with children aged 18 years and above undergoing preparatory courses such as foundation, A-Levels, matriculation, etc.
Child aged 18 and above pursuing further studies: RM8,000
RM8,000 is claimable for parents with unmarried children aged 18 and above if they are a full-time student pursuing:
- A diploma or higher (excluding the above mentioned preparatory courses) in Malaysia;
- An undergraduate, Master’s, or Doctoral degree (or its equivalent) outside Malaysia;
- Any courses at institutions of higher learning recognised by the Ministry of Higher Education (MOHE).
Insurance and investments
17. Life insurance, EPF, or approved schemes
Life insurance for retired public servants: ≤RM7,000
Retired public servants receiving a pension can claim tax relief of up to RM7,000 for their life insurance premiums or Takaful contributions. Those in this group do not qualify for EPF contribution reliefs.
Employees’ life insurance: ≤RM3,000
Employees in private and public sectors with no pensions are eligible for a tax relief of up to RM3,000.
Employees’ EPF: ≤RM4,000
Such employees can also claim up to RM4,000 for EPF contributions or other approved schemes. These investments include self-contributions to EPF without employer input.
18. Deferred annuity & PRS: ≤RM3,000
You are eligible for a tax relief limited to RM3,000 if you’ve made contributions in the deferred annuity scheme or the PRS (Private Retirement Scheme). This relief is in effect from YA 2012 to 2025.
19. Education & medical insurance: ≤RM3,000
You’re eligible for a tax relief of up to RM3,000 if you pay insurance premiums related to education or medical benefits for yourself, spouse, or children.
20. SOCSO: ≤RM250
You can also claim a relief restricted to RM250 for contributions made to SOCSO (Social Security Organisation) for that YA.
Local Tourism Expenses
21. Domestic travel expenses: ≤RM1,000
RM1,000 is claimable for domestic travel expenses if you stayed at a registered hotel, purchased entrance fees to tourist attractions or tourism packages through local travel agencies registered through the Ministry of Tourism, Arts, and Culture.
This relief includes domestic travel expenses incurred during the period between March 1, 2020, until December 31, 2022.
Before claiming the tax reliefs above, remember to keep all proof of spending such as statements, invoices, and receipts. This is to prepare for a possible audit by tax authorities in the future.
Under the tax laws, you are required to keep the records supporting your tax returns up to a period of 7 years.
- Read more about what we’ve written on taxes here.
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