Childcare expenses in a nutshell Posted on Mar 02, 2015

Childcare expenses could be claimed for children up to 16 years old

Don’t miss out on childcare expenses deduction. If you have children up to 16 years of age and you paid someone to take care for your children, you can deduct those expenses on your tax return. It is a substantial deduction as you can deduct up to $7,000 for each child under 6 years of age and $4,000 for each child between 7-16 years of age.

You can claim payments to caregivers, daycare centers, day nursery schools, before and after school programs, day camps etc.


Just keep receipts

To be able to make the claim, you would need to get a receipt from the provider that clearly indicates: child’s name, period in which service was rendered, amount paid, provider’s business name or personal name (and SIN if it is an individual). You do not need to send the receipt with your tax return but you must keep it for 6 years in case of an audit is conducted by the CRA. Note that since it is a large deduction on the tax return, CRA often conducts audits of this line.


Who can claim the deduction

The lower income spouse is the one that is claiming the deduction, therefore a family where one of the spouses is not working or studying, cannot make the claim as CRA assumes that a non-working parent can take care for a child. Also, you cannot pay one sibling to take care of another sibling. But you can pay a grandparent to take care for a grandchild. Child’s income for the year should be less than $11,138 to be eligible.