Questions and answers about child care expenses

My husband will have to pay a lot of tax this year. Can he claim the day care expenses instead of me?

Generally, the person with the lower net income (including zero income) must claim the child care expenses.

However, if your spouse or common-law partner has the higher net income and one of the conditions below apply, he can make the claim for child care expenses at line 214.

(a) You are enrolled in an educational program that is offered by a secondary school, college, university, or other designated educational institution. This includes any institution certified by Employment and Social Development Canada for courses that develop or improve occupational skills. An eligible program has to last at least 3 consecutive weeks. A full-time educational program requires students to spend at least 10 hours a week on courses or work in the program. A part-time educational program requires students to spend at least 12 hours in a calendar month on courses in the program.

(b) You were not capable of caring for children because of a mental or physical infirmity. You must have been confined for a period of at least two weeks to a bed or wheelchair, or as a patient in a hospital, or other similar institution. A statement from the attending physician certifying this information must be attached to your spouse's or common-law partner's claim.

(c) You were not capable of caring for children because of a mental or physical infirmity, and this situation is likely to continue for an indefinite period. A statement from the attending physician certifying this information must be attached to your spouse's or common-law partner's claim.

(d) You were confined to a prison or similar institution for a period of at least two weeks; or

(e) You were living separate and apart from your spouse or common-law partner at the end of the year and for a period of at least 90 days beginning in that year due to a breakdown of your relationship, but you reconciled before March 1 of the following year. However, such a claim is valid only if your spouse or common-law partner who had the higher income paid those child care expenses and the person with the lower income is a supporting person. See Income Tax Folio S1-F3-C1, Child Care Expense Deduction, for more detailed information on this subject.

During the summer I pay my 14-year old daughter to look after her little brother while my husband and I work. Can I include this on my return as a deduction?

Since the child care services are being provided by a person under 18 years of age who is related to you, you are not entitled to make a claim for child care expenses.

When the child care services are provided by an individual, the individual cannot be:

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