Former Coast Guard Reservist Denied Tax Claim For Sex Change – IRS

LAWFUEL- The Legal Newswire – After years of painful soul searching, Rhiannon O’Donnabhain — a former construction engineer from a devout Irish Catholic family in Boston — decided to surgically change his sex to female in 2001. The struggle was equally tough financially — hormone treatments and medical procedures set her back $25,000, a burden she felt could be partially offset by taking a $5,000 tax deduction for medical costs.

When she sent in her tax claims after the surgery, the Internal Revenue Service initially issued the 64-year-old former Coast Guard reservist a refund check for $5,000. But soon after, she was audited and ordered to return the refund because the IRS had determined that her surgery had been merely “cosmetic” — and therefore not tax deductible.

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