Canadian Government Helping to Keep Your Kids Fit

Fitness Tax Credit for Children

As with the usual pomp and media attention whenever our Canadian Government figures they are doing something good for the tax payer it is presented with much fanfare. The latest being the proposal of the doubling of the children’s fitness credit. So if up until now you simply haven’t been able to afford the costs associated with your youngster wanting to join in a fitness activity, now you may be able to do so.

The Children’s Fitness Tax Credit is going to be doubled, bringing it up to a $1,000, and it will be a tax refundable benefit. This really is a significant jump, and quite possibly will pay the way through parent affordability for the child who truly wants to anticipate in something that is classed as a fitness program.

Parents that are opting in for this will be able to make the claim on their 2015 tax return.

It is important though that you first understand the qualifying criteria for this, before enrolling your young one into any program.

Basically a child under the age of sixteen may qualify, and those under the age of eighteen if receiving a disability tax credit.

Where you really need to pay close attention is to the particular program that you are going to enroll your child in to be sure it meets the criteria for the credit.

It can either be an ongoing program comprised of at least 8 weeks consecutively or it can be a camp that runs for five days in a role.

The program must be designed for children.

It has to be a supervised program.

It must be comprised of a program that requires what is deemed as significant physical activity on the part of your child. These activities must include those which enhance cardiorespiratory endurance.

It must also promote at least one or more….

Muscular strength

Muscular endurance

And or either flexibility and balance

Some examples that the CRA gives that meets the criteria are sports such as….

Hockey, soccer or golf lessons

Or activities such as….

Horseback riding, sailing or bowling

This is not an all exhaustive list, as other sports and activities can qualify if they meet the criteria.

You may want to check with your accountant first before enrolling your child in an activity that you are wanting to qualify for this tax credit. This way you aren’t going to be disappointed should you or your child choose a program that does not fit the CRA criteria.

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Sam Seidman, CPA, CA, LPA
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Toronto, Ontario
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Telephone: (416) 398-1700
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Chartered Professional Accountant, Chartered Accountant, Licensed Public Accountant


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