The Canada Revenue Agency highlights International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Ottawa, Ontario, December 3, 2012… The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) marked the International Day of Persons with Disabilities today by reminding Canadians that there are many credits and benefits available to persons with disabilities, as well as opportunities to save money in a registered disability savings plan (RDSP).

Who is eligible?

A person is eligible for the various credits if they have an impairment in physical or mental functions that:

  • has lasted or is expected to last for at least 12 months;
  • is present at least 90{cae2521f64dcff784c511b644c6cc8c98f9594c79acdd41ba953a724385391e5} of the time; and
  • restricts them in a basic activity of daily life (seeing, hearing, eating, etc.) or causes the person to take an unreasonable amount of time to perform such an activity, even with appropriate therapy, medication and devices.

How can you take advantage of the credits and benefits?

To claim any of the disability-related credits or to open an RDSP, you have to complete Form T2201, Disability Tax Credit Certificate, and send it to the CRA. The form must be completed by you (or your supporting family member) and a qualified practitioner. A qualified practitioner could be a medical doctor, an optometrist, a psychologist, an audiologist etc. For a complete list, go to The CRA does not charge a fee to process the form or to determine if you are eligible.

Once you have completed this step and you have received confirmation from the CRA that you are eligible, you can claim the disability amount, also known as the disability tax credit, when you complete your income tax and benefit return. If your qualified practitioner has certified that the effects of your impairment began before the current tax year, you can request a reassessment for previous tax years.

Here are some other non-refundable tax credits available to eligible Canadians or their caregivers:

  • Caregiver amount – You may be able to claim the caregiver amount if you maintained a dwelling where you and one or more of your dependants lived. Each dependant must have been 18 years of age or older and dependent on you due to an impairment in physical or mental functions.
  • Children’s arts tax credit and children’s fitness tax credit – For each credit, families caring for a child who is eligible for the disability amount and is under 18 years of age at the start of the year can claim up to $ 1,000 per year, as long as a minimum of $ 100 was paid for registration or membership fees
  • The family caregiver tax credit – New for the 2012 tax year, the family caregiver tax credit reduces the tax payable of those who take care of dependants with a physical or mental disability. This credit provides an additional amount of $ 2,000 for each of the following tax credits:
  • spouse or common-law partner amount;
  • amount for an eligible dependant;
  • amount for children under age 18 at the end of the year;
  • amount for infirm dependants age 18 or older; and
  • caregiver amount.

For more information on tax matters for persons with disabilities, go to