Tax Tip: A New Tax Credit for Infirm Children

Last week we discussed a new Canada Caregiver’s Credit (CCC) for spouses and eligible dependants who can be claimed as “equivalent to spouse.” But did you know that you can now make a new claim if you are a caregiver of a dependent minor or adult child who is infirm? It’s possible under the revamped Canada Caregiver Credit.

Quick recall: the Canada Caregiver Credit comes with two parts:

  • A “Mini” CCC of $2,150, which must be claimed for an infirm minor child or someone for whom you are claiming a spousal amount. Remember that the term spousal amount also includes an “eligible dependant” or a someone you are claiming as “equivalent to spouse.”
  • A “Maxi” CCC of $6,883, or a portion thereof, may be claimed if you are supporting a spouse or eligible dependant whose net income is over $11,635. But, you may also claim this amount for infirm adult dependants. However, this larger credit, is never claimed for a minor child.

Infirm children. The claim is $2,150* for each infirm child under age 18. Children under 18 will be considered to be “infirm” only if they are likely to continue to be, for an indefinite period, dependant on others in attending to their personal needs significantly more than when compared to children of the same age. Only one claim may be made for an infirm child by one parent. But if that parent does not need the full amount, the unused amount may be transferred to their spouse. This is done using Schedule 2 on the personal tax return.

New Essential Tax Facts. Book by Evelyn JacksThe Canada Caregiver Credit may not be claimed by a taxpayer who is required to pay a support amount for the dependant. However, in the year of a change in marital status, the taxpayer has the option of claiming the credit or the support payments. In the case of a child, where both parents must make support payments, only one parent can make the CCC claim and the parties will need to agree on who that is.

Other Infirm dependants age 18 and over. In this case, claim $6,883* minus the dependant’s net income over $16,163. You will get a full claim if net income is under $16,163, a partial claim if it is between $16,163 and $23,046 and nothing when income is over that.

Your dependant can be your or your spouse’s parents/grandparents, brothers/sisters, aunts/uncles, nieces/nephews. Only one claim will be allowed for the Canada Caregiver Amount for this class of dependant, although the claim could be shared amongst two or more taxpayers, as long as the total amount claimed does not exceed the allowable claim.

Evelyn Jacks is President of Knowledge Bureau and author of the New Essential Tax Facts: How to Make the Right Tax Moves and Be Audit-Proof, Too, available in February. Pre-orders accepted now. Follow Evelyn on twitter @evelynjacks.