My business has requests from time to time to provide for interpreters and other services for people who are deaf or hard of hearing. Are there any tax benefits I can claim to assist me with these costs?
Good news! Assuming that your business counts as a “small business” under Section 44 of the Internal Revenue Code, you can get a tax credit of up to $15,000 for a variety of accessibility-related expenses, including sign language interpreters. Section 44 defines a small business as one that in the previous tax year either had revenues of $1 million or less or had 30 or fewer full-time employees. This tax credit, which is called the Disabled Access Credit, was created in 1990 to help small businesses afford ADA-related expenses. Be sure to familiarize yourself with how this credit is computed—you may want to consult your accountant. Here’s a list (taken from ADA.gov) of what can count toward this credit:
- Provision of readers for customers or employees with visual disabilities
- Provision of sign language interpreters
- Purchase of adaptive equipment
- Production of accessible formats of printed materials (i.e., Braille, large print, audio tape, computer diskette)
- Removal of architectural barriers in facilities or vehicles (alterations must comply with applicable accessibility standards)
- Fees for consulting services (under certain circumstances)