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Personal

Disability Tax Credit

To qualify for the disability tax credit, a qualified person must certify:

1) That you are blind, all or almost all of the time, even with the use of corrective lenses or medication, and your impairment is prolonged;

2) That you have a severe and prolonged perceiving, thinking and remembering or physical impairment that markedly restricts your ability to perform a basic activity of daily living (which now includes walking which may be certified by a physiotherapist), or

3) That you have life-sustaining therapy to support a vital function.

The disability tax credit is now available for individuals with severe Type I diabetes. Because of the requirement to utilize an intensive insulin management system, you may qualify as you require “life sustaining therapy”. However, at this point in time, it must markedly restrict your daily living, meaning even though you use medication, you are still unable to work, go to school, play sports etc. CRA is still in the process of updating this and may soon come out with more guidelines that may allow greater access to the claim for affected individuals.

Various homecare services (meal preparation, laundry) paid by a senior citizen could qualify as attendant care expenses and be eligible as medical expenses if the taxpayer is entitled to the disability tax credit. Such expenses may not be claimed in excess of $10,000.

If you are a Canadian resident under age 60 and are eligible for the Disability Tax Credit (Disability Amount), you are eligible for an RDSP. Earnings accumulate tax-free, until you take money out of your RDSP. The Government provides matching grants of up to 300%, depending on the beneficiary’s family income and the amount contributed. The maximum is $3,500 each year.