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How much is the Disability Tax Credit worth?

February 03, 2017
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The maximum Disability Tax Credit (DTC) amount that anyone can claim is $50,000, but finding your maximum DTC amount involves hundreds of combinations of factors. So we’ve summarized the basics for you.

Income taxes paid

To claim the DTC, you must have paid income tax. The amount of income taxes you paid (for each year you are claiming the DTC) is the starting point to assess your maximum eligible DTC amounts.

For example, if you are approved the DTC for the years 2014 and 2015, paid zero income taxes in 2014 and paid $500 in 2015, presumably your maximum Disability Tax Credit amount is $500.

If you haven’t paid any income tax, don’t be discouraged. You can transfer any unclaimed disability tax credits to a supporting family member.

In that case, the starting point to determine your maximum DTC amount would be the income tax history of whomever you transfer your credits to.

Federal Disability Tax Credit amounts

When you pay income taxes, you pay a federal portion and a separate provincial portion. So when you claim the Disability Tax Credit, you also claim a federal portion and a provincial one.

The federal Disability Tax Credit amount varies by year but is worth the same for everyone (except residents of Quebec). To illustrate, everyone approved to claim the DTC for 2015 can claim up to $1,184.85 in federal amounts for that year.

Provincial Disability Tax Credit amounts

The provincial DTC amounts also vary by year – and are found on the tax forms for the given year. For example, in 2015 the maximum claimable amounts for

  • Saskatchewan residents was $1,1013.54,
  • Ontario residents was $402.30

While the maximum 2014 amounts were:

  • $996.60 for Saskatchewan residents
  • $394.51 for Ontario residents

Provinces also offer additional DTC amounts for children, so age also becomes a factor.

Age

Both adults and children can claim up to $20,000 (in retroactive claims up to 10 years) but because of additional benefits accessible only for children with disabilities, retroactive Disability Tax Credit amounts for children can reach up to $50,000.

The year your disability started

The Disability Tax Credit is retroactive up to 10 years, meaning you can only claim the DTC for the years that you’ve lived with your disability. For example, if your disability started in 2015 and it’s now 2017, you can expect to claim the DTC for only those years (and any future years your disability is expected to last).

Keep in mind that the Canada Revenue Agency must approve the years you are eligible to claim the Disability Tax Credit.

Since you can only claim the DTC back up to 10 years, any years prior are unclaimable. It’s 2017 now, so that means if you were eligible to, but didn’t claim the DTC for 2006, it’s unfortunately too late.

Remember that the DTC is nonrefundable, so if you claim the total credit this year on your income taxes, reducing your tax payable to zero, you won’t get a refund for outstanding credits. Although you can transfer remainder amounts to a supporting family member like a spouse.

You can stay up-to-date with our Disability Tax Credit tips and guides by signing up for our mailing list.

If you need more information about transferring the Disability Tax Credit or Disability Tax Credit eligibility, schedule a call with us and we’ll tell you how it works.

For more information about the DTC, please visit our dedicated information page here.

Click here for our easy-to-use Disability Tax Credit calculator.