The Canada caregiver amount is a non-refundable credit that can be claimed if you provided care to your spouse or common-law partner or a dependant who suffered from an impairment in mental or physical functions at any time during the year.
For the purposes of this tax credit, a dependant can be your or your spouse’s:
- Child or grandchild
- Parent, grandparent, brother, sister, uncle, aunt, niece, or nephew (if they lived in Canada at any time during the year)
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) might ask for signed statement from a doctor showing when the impairment began and the expected duration of it. If you’re claiming the Canada caregiver amount for a child under the age of 18, the statement should also include that because of the impairment, the child will likely continue to be dependent on others for an indefinite period of time.
Note: If the CRA already has an approved T2201: Disability tax certificate on file for the person for whom you’re claiming the amount, you won’t need a signed statement from a doctor.
How much can I claim?
Depending on your situation you might be able to claim the following amounts:
- For a spouse or common – law partner - If the net income of your spouse for the year was between $6,902 and $23, 046, you might be able to claim up to a maximum of $6,986*. However, you’ll need to first claim the amount for a spouse on your return.
- For an eligible dependant over the age of 18 - If the net income of your eligible dependant for the year was between $6,902 and $23, 046, you might be able to claim up to a maximum of $6,986*. However, you’ll need to first claim the amount for an eligible dependant on your return.
- For an eligible dependant under the age of 18 – you might be able to claim an amount of $2,182* for each eligible dependant.
If the dependant is your or your spouse’s child, he or she must have also lived with both of you throughout the year. If you are making this claim for more than one child, either you or your spouse can claim the credit for all the eligible children or you can each claim separate children but each child can only be claimed once.
Note: If you shared custody of your child throughout the year, the parent who claims the amount for the eligible dependant for that child can claim this amount. If you and your spouse can’t agree on who should claim the amount, neither of you can make the claim.
*These amounts and the net income threshold are indexed to inflation.
Last year I was able to claim the caregiver credit for my elderly mother who lived with us. She does not suffer from a mental or physical infirmity. Can I claim the Canada caregiver amount for her?
Unfortunately, the Canada caregiver amount cannot be claimed unless the family member suffered from a mental or physical infirmity during the year.
Where do I claim this?
H&R Block’s tax software will automatically claim the Canada caregiver amount for you, based on the information you’ve entered in your return. If you are preparing your return with your spouse (coupled return), the amount is automatically applied to the return with the highest income. However, you can change who will claim this tax credit on the Optimized credits page under OPTIMIZATION on the WRAP-UP tab.