Disability Tax Credit at a glance

The Government of Canada recognizes that living with a disability can have significant effects on the daily lives of individuals and their families. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is committed to administering tax credits and benefits for persons with disabilities in a fair, transparent, and accessible way.

Building on this commitment, the CRA is publically releasing detailed statistics on the Disability Tax Credit (DTC) featuring data on the number of people claiming the DTC, amounts claimed, and applications accepted and rejected in the last six fiscal years. It’s important to note that eligibility is not based on a diagnosis, but rather on the effects of the impairment on the ability to perform the basic activities of daily living (as described in the Income Tax Act).

Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2011 to 2017 (by fiscal year)

The tables below show the number of people claiming the DTC, the value of DTC claims, and the number of new processed applications accepted and rejected, for each fiscal year from 2011-2012 to 2016-2017. This information is broken down by the type of Basic Activities of Daily Living (BADL) affected to illustrate DTC usage and applications for each type of impairment.

The number of people claiming the DTC reached an all-time high in the 2016-2017 fiscal year. Some 770,000 individuals claimed the DTC, representing more than $1.3 billion dollars in tax relief.
 

Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2016-2017 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 10,396 $ 17,809,278 4,821 841
Walking 200,449 $ 343,392,872 92,957 7,102
Speaking 56,137 $ 96,168,623 26,033 2,447
Mental Functions 205,339 $ 351,771,101 95,225 21,795
Hearing 18,029 $ 30,886,408 8,361 1,743
Feeding 44,977 $ 77,051,632 20,858 1,344
Dressing 95,393 $ 163,419,795 44,238 2,547
Eliminating 51,080 $ 87,505,948 23,688 2,172
Life-sustaining therapy 33,184 $ 56,848,574 15,389 2,389
Cumulative 50,088 $ 85,806,659 23,228 2,777
TotalsFootnote 5 765,072 $ 1,310,660,890 354,798 45,157
Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2015-2016 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 9,683 $ 16,233,269 5,003 678
Walking 185,776 $ 311,446,437 95,986 5,076
Speaking 48,591 $ 81,461,612 25,106 1,417
Mental Functions 195,178 $ 327,209,223 100,844 14,199
Hearing 16,887 $ 28,310,068 8,725 1,182
Feeding 41,252 $ 69,157,683 21,314 797
Dressing 91,324 $ 153,101,495 47,185 1,705
Eliminating 46,389 $ 77,769,135 23,968 1,257
Life-sustaining therapy 26,750 $ 44,845,094 13,821 1,707
Cumulative 45,138 $ 75,673,054 23,322 2,217
TotalsFootnote 5 706,968 $ 1,185,207,070 365,274 30,235
Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2014-2015 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 10,064 $ 16,684,897 5,543 679
Walking 172,604 $ 286,165,707 95,069 6,287
Speaking 45,966 $ 76,209,315 25,318 1,191
Mental Functions 182,382 $ 302,378,021 100,455 13,389
Hearing 17,693 $ 29,333,272 9,745 1,172
Feeding 40,823 $ 67,681,746 22,485 884
Dressing 87,183 $ 144,544,249 48,020 1,853
Eliminating 43,553 $ 72,208,913 23,989 1,328
Life-sustaining therapy 24,554 $ 40,708,380 13,524 1,670
Cumulative 39,657 $ 65,749,272 21,843 2,009
TotalsFootnote 5 664,479 $ 1,101,663,773 365,991 30,462
Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2013-2014 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 13,033 $ 21,107,614 7,552 720
Walking 164,672 $ 266,701,636 95,422 6,776
Speaking 44,159 $ 71,520,490 25,589 1,113
Mental Functions 177,406 $ 287,325,720 102,801 13,389
Hearing 17,654 $ 28,592,544 10,230 1,053
Feeding 44,779 $ 72,523,884 25,948 707
Dressing 84,600 $ 137,017,819 49,023 1,924
Eliminating 43,669 $ 70,726,718 25,305 1,495
Life-sustaining therapy 20,997 $ 34,006,401 12,167 1,539
Cumulative 32,972 $ 53,400,698 19,106 1,684
TotalsFootnote 5 643,940 $ 1,042,923,523 373,143 30,400
Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2012-2013 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 10,695 $ 16,945,958 5,577 570
Walking 162,185 $ 256,975,707 84,572 7,268
Speaking 44,577 $ 70,630,945 23,245 1,280
Mental Functions 173,325 $ 274,626,607 90,381 14,385
Hearing 17,302 $ 27,413,740 9,022 1,113
Feeding 39,917 $ 63,247,285 20,815 702
Dressing 81,804 $ 129,615,153 42,657 2,021
Eliminating 37,150 $ 58,862,666 19,372 1,421
Life-sustaining therapy 23,108 $ 36,614,450 12,050 1,641
Cumulative 31,982 $50,673,791 16,677 1,622
TotalsFootnote 5 622,044 $985,606,303 324,368 32,023
Disability Tax Credit (DTC) statistics from 2011-2012 (by fiscal year)
Basic Activities of Daily Living Total Number of approved people claiming Disability Tax CreditFootnote 1 Value of DTC ClaimsFootnote 2 New Applications Processed and AcceptedFootnote 3 New Applications Processed and RejectedFootnote 4
Vision 10,691 $ 16,666,960 6,483 558
Walking 157,832 $ 246,055,538 95,709 6,110
Speaking 39,377 $ 61,387,269 23,878 970
Mental Functions 150,111 $ 234,018,718 91,027 12,768
Hearing 17,058 $ 26,593,095 10,344 843
Feeding 42,055 $ 65,562,364 25,502 665
Dressing 83,585 $ 130,307,192 50,686 1,643
Eliminating 39,649 $ 61,811,463 24,043 1,177
Life-sustaining therapy 21,235 $ 33,105,112 12,877 1,398
Cumulative 25,315 $ 39,465,448 15,351 1,197
Totals Footnote 5 586,909 $ 914,973,158 355,900 27,329

Disability Tax Credit

The Disability Tax Credit is a non-refundable tax credit that makes a meaningful difference in the lives of hundreds of thousands of Canadians living with a disability each year.

To be eligible for the DTC, an individual must have a severe and prolonged impairment in physical or mental functions, as defined in the Income Tax Act and as certified by a medical practitioner. Eligibility is not based on a diagnosis, but rather on the effects of the impairment on the ability to perform the basic activities of daily living (as described in the Income Tax Folio S1-F1-C2, Disability Tax Credit).

The priority of the CRA is to ensure that people who qualify for the DTC receive it. There is no target rate for DTC approvals or denials. The CRA reviews every application on a case-by-case basis to make sure that people who qualify for the credit receive it.

When an individual does not agree with the CRA’s determination, they can:

  • send their tax centre additional information to support their application for up to one year after they submitted their initial application, and ask their tax centre to review their application again.
  • submit a new application.

There is also a formal appeals process available to taxpayers if they disagree with the CRA’s determination.

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