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I spend $16K a year in child care. I submit $5K to a plan-125 cafeteria plan. Can I deduct the remaining $11K or is $5K the max?

The maximum amount that may be used for the Child or Dependent Care Credit, in any event, is $4800. That's $2400 per child or dependent and you may claim no more than two qualifying persons. In your case, you have been reimbursed in excess of that $4800. but your expenses exceeded that amount. You have no tax consequence/credit. Had you spent less than the entire $5,000, you would likely have had to have reported the amount, not spent on child care, as income to you on your tax return. Form 2441 "Child & Dependent Care Expenses" is used to calculate the allowable credit or amounts to be reported as income.

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