Attendant Care

One of the most overlooked tax breaks for parents with children who qualify for the Disability Amount is Attendant Care.

Some examples of Attendant Care include:

  • Hiring a nanny to care for your child (full time or part time)
  • Paying a babysitter or child care worker
  • House cleaning services (Yes, it’s true! Check out 2007 Tax Court of Canada case, Zaffino v. the Queen)
  • Full or part time care in a school, institution, or other establishment (to claim these expenses, a medical practitioner must confirm the person’s need for the equipment, facilities, or personnel available in the establishment)
  • Transportation services
  • Maid service
  • Meal preparation
  • Care or supervision in a group home
  • Respite

Attendant Care is claimed as part of the Medical Expense Tax Credit. This means that you will get about 20% of your money back.

You may claim up to $10,000 and still receive the Disability Amount. Note that this is per paying individual. Each spouse may contribute the $10,000 for a total of $20,000. This amount may then be combined and claimed as a medical expense. To do this, each supporting individual must have receipts to back up their claim.

Claiming attendant care costs higher than $2,578 (for the 2012 tax year) will reduce the Disability Amount Supplement.

You may claim more than the $10,000 however this will reduce the Disability Amount. I do not recommend that you claim more than this amount unless the attendant care expenses go beyond $17,546 (for the 2012 tax year).

Tax Tip

Hire a relative to care for your disabled child. The individual must not be your spouse or common-law partner and must be at least 18 years of age. You also have to provide invoices with the individual’s SIN number.

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