Canada child benefit - How to apply


To apply for the Canada child benefit (CCB), follow the three-step process below:

  • Step 1 – Find out if you are eligible
  • Step 2 – Apply for the Canada child benefit
  • Step 3 – Keep your information up to date

See situations when you have to provide supporting documents with your application.

Step 1 of 3 – Find out if you are eligible

To be eligible for the CCB, you have to meet all of the following conditions:

  • You must live with the child, and the child must be under 18 years of age.
  • You must be primarily responsible for the care and upbringing of the child.
  • You must be a resident of Canada for tax purposes.
  • You or your spouse or common-law partner must be:
    • a Canadian citizen
    • a permanent resident
    • a protected person
    • a temporary resident who has lived in Canada for the previous 18 months, and who has a valid permit in the 19th month
    • an Indian within the meaning of the Indian Act, if you are not a Canadian citizen

Step 2 of 3 – Apply for the CCB

You can apply for the Canada child benefit (CCB) using one of the following ways:

Get your payments faster

Even before your baby is born, you can register for direct deposit. If you are already registered for this service with the CRA, you do not need to register again.

Automated Benefits Application

You can apply for the CCB when you register the birth of your newborn with your province. The territories will be offering this service in the near future.

After your baby is born:

  1. Complete the birth registration for your newborn.
  2. Give your consent in the appropriate section to let your vital statistics agency securely share the information from your birth registration with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
  3. Enter your social insurance number.
  4. Send your application to the vital statistics agency.
Note

If you do not give your consent, you will have to apply for the CCB separately.

Who can apply

You can use the Automated Benefits Application if both of these situations apply:

  1. you are the birth mother of the newborn
  2. you did not already apply using either My Account or Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application

If you use the Automated Benefits Application, do not apply again any other way.

Note

Your marital status information from the birth registration is not shared with the CRA. You have to update your marital status with the CRA. Your marital status affects your benefit payment amounts.

My Account

You can use My Account if any of these situations apply:

  • your child is born
  • a child starts to live with you
  • you did not already apply using the Automated Benefits Application or Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application

What you need to do

  1. Log in to My Account.
  2. Go to “Apply for child benefits.”
  3. Confirm your contact information, your marital status and your citizenship.
  4. Add your child’s name, gender, date and place of birth and caregiver information.

After you apply, you can check the status of your application by going to My Account.

Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application

You can use Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application, if any of these situations apply:

  • your child is born
  • a child starts to live with you
  • you are a new resident of Canada
  • you did not already apply using the Automated Benefits Application or My Account

What you need to do

  1. Fill out and sign Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application.
  2. Mail the completed form to your tax centre.

When do you have to provide supporting documents with your application?

You must fill out more forms or provide supporting documents with your Canada Child Benefits Application if:

You share custody of a child

Do you share custody? If both individuals in the shared custody arrangement want to receive a portion of the benefits, attach a note to the application. The note must clearly explain your shared custody arrangement.

You must contact the CRA if you end your shared custody arrangement.

You need to provide proof of birth

You must provide proof of birth with your application if the CRA has never paid benefits for this child and either of the following situations apply:

  • the child was born outside Canada
  • the child was born in Canada but is more than a year old

Your application is for a period that started more than 11 months ago

If your application is for a period that started more than 11 months ago, include supporting documents for the entire period.

Provide clear copies of all pages (both sides) of the following documents:

  • proof of citizenship status
    • for example, a Canadian birth certificate or immigration status in Canada for you and your spouse or common-law partner, if you have one
  • proof that you lived in Canada (at least three supporting documents)
    • for example, a lease agreement, rent receipts, utility bills or bank statements
  • proof of birth for each child
  • proof that you were the person who is primarily responsible for the care and upbringing of the child (at least three supporting documents)

You or your spouse or common-law partner are a new or returning resident or citizen of Canada

You must complete Schedule RC66SCH, Status in Canada/Statement of Income and include it with your application if either you or your spouse or common-law partner:

  • became a new resident or returned as a resident of Canada in the last two years
  • became Canadian citizens within the last 12 months

You also have to fill out and attach Schedule RC66SCH, if you or your spouse or common-law partner are, as defined in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act:

  • a permanent resident
  • a protected person (refugee)
  • a temporary resident who has lived in Canada for the previous 18 months
  • not a Canadian citizen, but are an Indian within the meaning of the Indian Act

Step 3 of 3 – Keep your information up to date

To continue receiving the benefit and credit payments that you are entitled to, file your income tax and benefit return every year, even if you do not have income in the year. If you have a spouse or common-law partner, they also have to file a return every year.   

Make sure you keep your information up to date. We need to know when your personal information changes so that you get the right payment. You need to contact the CRA when:

  • your marital status changes
  • you change your address
  • you want to start, change or stop direct deposit
  • the number of children in your care changes
  • you start or stop sharing custody with another individual of one or more children
  • a death has occurred
  • you or your spouse or common-law partner's residency status has changed
  • your notice shows outdated information

Go to how we calculate your CCB for more information on how your personal information affects your payment.

Do you need to apply for related provincial and territorial programs?

You do not need to apply separately for provincial and territorial programs. The CRA uses your Canada Child Benefits Application, whichever way you applied, to determine if you are eligible for provincial or territorial benefits and credits. If you are, we will automatically calculate your payments based on information from your and your spouse or common-law partner’s income tax and benefit return.

The CRA administers the following provincial and territorial programs related to the CCB:

  • Alberta child benefit
  • Alberta family employment tax credit
  • BC early childhood tax benefit
  • New Brunswick child tax benefit
  • Newfoundland and Labrador child benefit
  • Northwest Territories child benefit
  • Nova Scotia child benefit
  • Nunavut child benefit
  • Ontario child benefit
  • Yukon child benefit

Québec child assistance payments provide financial assistance to all eligible families who have one or more dependent children under 18 years of age. See Retraite Québec for more information on the program and how to apply. 

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