The provincial government is helping Ontario families with the cost of activities that keep their kids healthy and active.
Through the new, permanent Children’s Activity Tax Credit, parents can claim up to $500 in eligible expenses and get a refundable tax credit of up to $50 for each child under the age of 16, and up to $100 per child under the age of 18 who has a disability.
As part of the “Open Ontario” plan, this tax credit is the only one in Canada that covers a wide range of activities—from hockey, music, or art lessons to dance class.
In addition, the credit is fully refundable, meaning all Ontario families can benefit, including those who pay little or no income tax.
All activities paid for in 2010 are eligible for the credit—but parents must keep receipts to claim the credit.
“We’re making it easier for moms and dads to get their kids involved in sports, arts, and other activities that keep them healthy and active,” said Finance minister Dwight Duncan.
“By making this tax credit retroactive and refundable, and expanding the list of eligible activities, we’re putting money into the pockets of more Ontario families,” he added.
The Children’s Activity Tax Credit will provide roughly $75 million to about 1.1 million Ontario families each year, benefiting 1.8 million children.
To receive this tax credit, parents must keep any receipts from enrolling their children in eligible activities since Jan. 1, 2010 and file a 2010 income tax return.
Physical activities that are eligible for the federal children’s fitness tax credit automatically will be eligible for the Children’s Activity Tax Credit.
Non-fitness activities, such as tutoring, Scouts and Girl Guides, and drama, also will be eligible.
Through the “Open Ontario” plan, the government is providing targeted tax relief measures to help Ontario families, including the Northern Ontario Energy Credit, the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, and the Ontario Clean Energy Benefit.