It’s Tax Season! Which Credits and Deductions Can You Claim?

| Planning for Myself or a Loved One

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The deadline to file individual tax returns for 2018 is coming up soon, on April 30, 2019. If you owe the government taxes, that’s also the deadline to pay, so it’s a good idea to complete your return several weeks earlier so that the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) can assess how much you owe and you can pay on time. If you’re late, the CRA charges compound daily interest starting on May 1, as well as interest on penalties starting the day after your filing due date.

If you or your spouse or common-law partner is self-employed, you have a little more time to file – your deadline is June 15, 2019. But, if you owe money, it’s still due on April 30, so you may as well get to work on your tax return now. (Last year, the CRA began accepting tax returns at the end of February.)

Tax credits and deductions

Tax credits and deductions reduce the amount of tax that you must pay. Here is a list of credits and deductions that you may be eligible for. The list is not exhaustive; for more information, visit the Government of Canada’s “Deductions, credits, and expenses” webpage.

  • Family, child care and caregivers: Claim credits and deductions for your children, eligible dependants, and spouse or common-law partner, as well as amounts related to being a caregiver. Examples: child care expenses, support payments made, Canada caregiver amount for spouse or common-law partner and eligible dependants 18 or older, eligible medical expenses.
  • Education: Claim amounts for post-secondary and adult basic education for yourself and others. Examples: tuition, education and textbook amounts; moving expenses; interest paid on student loans; adult basic education tuition assistance.
  • Disability: Claim amounts for someone with an impairment in physical or mental functions. Examples: disability supports deduction; Canada caregiver amount for spouse or common-law partner, or eligible dependant age 18 or older; disability amount for yourself; home accessibility expenses.
  • Employment expenses and credits: Claim amounts related to employment income and more. Examples: annual union or professional dues, moving expenses, expenses paid to earn employment income.
  • Pension and savings plans: Claim amounts related to pension and savings income you reported, contributions and more. Examples: pension adjustment, registered pension plan deduction, RRSP deduction, deduction for elected split-pension amount.
  • Provincial and territorial tax and credits for individuals: Provincial or territorial credits you may be entitled to in addition to your federal credits.
  • Climate action incentive: Residents of Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario and New Brunswick can claim this on their income tax return.
  • Charitable donations: If you donated to a registered Canadian charity or other qualified donee that gives official donation receipts in 2018, you may be eligible for a tax credit.

Additional resources

Personal income tax
Government of Canada services and information related to your personal income tax return.

Tax credits for caregivers
If you have a dependant with a physical or mental impairment, you may be eligible for the Family Caregiver Amount tax credit and other credits.

All deductions, credits and expenses
The Government of Canada’s searchable list of deductions, credits and expenses, organized by topic and tax return line number.

Free tax clinics
If you have a modest income and a simple tax situation, you may be eligible for free tax return preparation.

This article has been provided for general informational purposes only. For individual tax advice, consult a financial professional in your area.