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Child Fitness Tax Credit

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Filing Your Return
Disabilities -> Federal and provincial fitness tax credits

Line 365 Federal Children's Fitness Amount Tax Credit

Income Tax Act s. 118.03, Regulations s. 9400

There is a federal non-refundable tax credit available to individuals for registration and membership costs of up to $500 per child, not indexed for inflation.  This tax credit has been available since the 2007 taxation year.

News:  On October 9, 2014, the federal government announced in a news release that the amount that can be claimed under this credit for 2014 and subsequent years will be doubled to $1,000 per child, and that the credit will be made refundable effective for the 2015 and subsequent taxation years.

The tax credit is available for prescribed programs of physical activity for their children who are, at the beginning of the taxation year

bullet under 16 years of age, or
bullet under 18 for a child with a disability (i.e., when any person is able to claim a disability amount tax credit for the child on line 318 of the federal tax return)

The tax credit is calculated using the lowest tax rate of 15%, so the maximum tax credit per child for 2014 will be $150 (previously $75).

An additional tax credit is available to an individual for a child with a disability.  The additional credit will be $500 x the lowest tax rate, if the total of eligible fitness costs for that child in the year is $100 or more.  This brings the maximum tax credit to $150 for a child with a disability.  There is no change to this additional amount for 2014.

Example of calculation of child fitness tax credit:

Total cost for prescribed programs for the child $80 $100 $200 $300 $400 $500 $600
Child fitness tax credit @15% to maximum $75 $12 $15 $30 $45 $60 $75 $75
Additional tax credit for child with disability $500 x 15% 0 75 75 75 75 75 75
Total tax credit for child with disability $12 $90 $105 $120 $135 $150 $150

The tax credit may be claimed by either spouse, or apportioned between them.

A prescribed program of physical activity includes the following, which are not part of a school's curriculum:

  1. a weekly program of 8 or more consecutive weeks in which all or substantially all of the activities include a significant amount of physical activity;
  2. a program of 5 or more consecutive days, if more than 50% of the daily activities include a significant amount of physical activity;
  3. a program of 8 or more consecutive weeks, offered to children by an organization where participants in the program may select from a variety of activities if
    1. more than 50% of the activities include a significant amount of physical activity, or
    2. more than 50% of the time scheduled in the program is scheduled for activities that include a significant amount of physical activity
  4. membership in an organization for 8 or more consecutive weeks if more than 50% of the activities offered to children by the organization include a significant amount of physical activity
  5. for a program of 8 or more consecutive weeks, which does not meet the 50% requirement of (c) above, offered to children by an organization where participants in the program may select from a variety of activities, the portion
    1. that is the percentage of those activities that include a significant amount of physical activity, or
    2. that is the percentage of time scheduled in the program that is scheduled for activities that include a significant amount of physical activity
  6. for membership in an organization for 8 or more consecutive weeks, where the 50% requirement of (d) above is not met, the portion of membership that is the percentage of all the activities offered to children by the organization that are activities that include a significant amount of physical activity

Physical activity means a supervised activity suitable for children (other than an activity where a child rides on or in a motorized vehicle as an essential component of the activity) that

bullet in the case of a child with a disability, results in movement and in an observable expenditure of energy in a recreational context; and
bullet in the case of any other child, contributes to cardio-respiratory endurance and to one or more of the following:
bullet muscular strength,
bullet muscular endurance,
bullet flexibility, and
bullet balance

Horseback riding is deemed to be included in the above definition of physical activity.

Any costs which qualify as child care costs must first be claimed as child care costs, with the remainder of eligible costs then claimed through the fitness credit.

For more information, see the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) Children's Fitness Tax Credit page, and the Children's Fitness Tax Credit video.

The Federal Children's Fitness Credit is calculated by the Canadian Tax Calculator, but the amount is not checked to ensure that the maximum is not exceeded.

Provincial fitness tax credits

Some of these tax credits are not just for children:

BC Children's Fitness Tax Credit started in 2012.

Manitoba Fitness Tax Credit

Nova Scotia Healthy Living Tax Credit

Ontario Children's Activity Tax Credit - Refundable

Saskatchewan Active Families Benefit

Yukon Child Fitness Credit

Yukon has the same non-refundable child fitness tax credit as the federal tax credit, with the only difference being the tax rate applied.  Yukon also provides the additional tax credit for a child with a disability.

Other Tax Credits for Children

See also:

bulletTax Information for Students
bulletChildren's Arts Tax Credit (CATC)
bulletChild Amount Tax Credit
bullet links to all information on TaxTips.ca related to persons with disabilities.

Tax Tip:  Keep the receipts for your children's physical activity programs.

 

Revised: December 18, 2014

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