With 2012 behind us, it`s time to start thinking about taxes! If there are 2 things in life we can be sure of, it`s “death and taxes”. Taxes don`t have to always bring on the blues. It can mean money in your pocket if your plan your year, deductions and purchases right.
Here are a few things families with kids can claim on their income taxes:
Having a Baby:
We certainly lucked out in 2012 – we had a baby. In December I gave birth to a healthy baby girl, and although she hasn`t been with us for a full year, we still get to claim her as a dependant, a full $2,191. I guess there was a huge benefit for her early arrival. If one parent can`t claim all the benefit, the other can! (Of course, you also claim any other child living at home)
We signed Princess Activity up for all kinds of sports: soccer, skating and swimming. Parents can claim up to $500 per child (16 years and under) for physical activities. And for my local readers in Nova Scotia, there is also a provincial credit for being active as well – bonus.
Paying for Child Care:
Who takes care of your kids? Did you know that you can claim up to $7000 per child for day care (assuming you’ve paid at least that much). This is a huge expense for families, my friends and I were talking about some years paying nearly $20,000 in child care per year, so every deduction counts.
This one is brand new. If your kids take artistic classes, like language, Girl Guides, Scouts or ballet, you can claim up to $500 on your taxes. I love this option, specifically because not all kids are “sporty”, and would rather focus on the Arts.
Taking the Bus:
That’s right, if you or your kids under the age of 19 buy bus passes, you can claim it! As long as there are 4 weeks in a row of bus passes.
Saving for Education:
While you don’t necessarily get a tax benefit for saving for your kids education with an RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan), the government will add a maximum of $500 to each child’s plan. This is basically like free money.
Ensure you save your receipts when claiming each of these family related tax deductible benefits.
You have until April 30th to complete your taxes. If you owe money, and send in your taxes after the April 30th deadline you will be charged interest. But hopefully with a few of the tax tips mentioned above, you’ll have extra money in your pocket!
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