Frequently Asked Questions: Increasing the Adoption Expense Tax Credit

The Adoption Expense Tax Credit is a 15-per-cent non-refundable tax credit that allows adoptive parents to claim eligible adoption expenses relating to the completed adoption of a child under the age of 18. The credit recognizes the unique costs of adopting a child and may be claimed in the taxation year in which an adoption is finalized.

Adoptive parents may claim the credit on their income tax returns. The credit applies to eligible adoption expenses, including: adoption agency fees, immigration fees, document translation fees, court and legal expenses, mandatory fees paid to a foreign institution, and reasonable travel and living expenses for the child and adoptive parents. Prior to Economic Action Plan 2014, the Adoption Expense Tax Credit provided a tax credit on up to a maximum of $11,774 in expenses per child for 2014.

To provide further tax recognition of adoption-related expenses, Economic Action Plan 2014 increases the maximum amount of the credit to $15,000. This change will apply to adoptions finalized after 2013. Normal indexation will apply to the new maximum amount for taxation years after 2014.

This improvement builds on the Government’s previous action in Economic Action Plan 2013, which extended the period during which expenses are eligible for the Adoption Expense Tax Credit in order to better recognize the costs incurred by adoptive parents prior to being matched with a child, such as fees for a provincially required home study and mandatory adoption courses. As a result of this action, for adoptions finalized after 2012, the adoption period begins at the earlier of:

The Harper Government recognizes that families are the building blocks of our society.

The enhancement of the Adoption Expense Tax Credit builds on the Government’s record of targeted tax reductions and other measures that benefit Canadian families and individuals. For example, since 2006 the Government has:

In total, the Government will have provided almost $160 billion in tax relief for Canadian families and individuals from 2008-09 through 2013–14.

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