Federal and provincial tax credits for adoption expenses

What’s in this article?

 

What is this?

You can claim eligible adoption expenses related to the adoption of a child under 18 years of age. ​The maximum claim amount for each child changes annually based on inflation. 

Eligible adoption expenses must be incurred during the adoption period and can only be claimed in the tax year in which the adoption period ends. For example, eligible expenses are claimable once you submit your application for adoption with an adoption agency, provincial ministry, or a Canadian court. The adoption period ends when a government in Canada issues or recognizes an adoption order for that child or when the child begins to live with you permanently, whichever is later. Any expenses incurred after the end of the adoption period, are not claimable.

If you are filing a federal tax return, you will enter your adoption expenses on Schedule 1, Federal Tax.

If you are filing a Québec tax return, you will enter your adoption expenses on form TP-1029.8.63-V : Tax credit for adoption expenses.

Note: The following provinces have a corresponding provincial credit for adoption expenses:

  • Newfoundland and Labrador
  • Ontario
  • Manitoba
  • Alberta
  • British Columbia
  • Yukon

To claim a provincial credit for adoption expenses, you must be resident of one of the above provinces at the end of the year and must meet the rules for claiming the federal adoption expenses.

Click this link for more information on provincial and territorial tax and credits.

 

Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) says…

The adoption period:

  • begins either when an application is made for registration with a provincial or territorial ministry responsible for adoption (or with an adoption agency licensed by a provincial or territorial government) or when an application related to the adoption is made to a Canadian court, whichever is earlier; and
  • ends when an adoption order is issued by, or recognized by, a government in Canada for that child or when the child first begins to live permanently with you, whichever is later.

Note: An adoption period may cover more than one tax year. Eligible expenses for the whole adoption period must be claimed in the tax year when the adoption is completed.

Two adoptive parents can split the claim amount in any way as long as the total is not more than the maximum claim amount for the tax year.

Click this link for more information on the current maximum claim amount.

 

Revenu Québec says…

When you file your income tax return, you can claim a refundable tax credit for expenses incurred for the adoption of a child. The tax credit for adoption expenses is equal to 50% of the total eligible expenses that you or your spouse paid in relation to the adoption. However, the maximum tax credit is $10 000 per child. 

 

Am I eligible?

If your adoption expenses took place within the adoption period, you may be able to claim the following eligible expenses:

  • Fees paid to an adoption agency licensed by a provincial or territorial government;
  • Court costs related to an adoption order in respect of the child;
  • Legal and administrative expenses related to an adoption order in respect of the child;
  • Reasonable and necessary travel and living expenses for the child and the adoptive parents;
  • Document translation fees (if applicable);
  • Mandatory fees paid to a foreign institution;
  • Mandatory expenses paid in respect of the immigration of that child; and
  • Other reasonable expenses required by a provincial or territorial government or an adoption agency.

​​Eligible expenses have to be reduced by any reimbursements or other forms of assistance received.

Revenu Québec says…

To be entitled to the refundable tax credit for adoption expenses, the applicant must: 

  • have resided in Québec on December 31 of the taxation year in respect of which the tax credit is requested (in the case of a deceased person, the latter must have resided in Québec on the day of death); 
  • have received, during the taxation year in respect of which the tax credit is requested, one of the following documents: 
  • a document that attests the adoption judgment that establishes a relationship between the adoptive parent and the child and that was rendered by a court exercising its territorial jurisdiction in Québec; 
  • a document that attests the adoption decision rendered outside Québec that is subject to judicial recognition in Québec; 
  • a certificate of conformity in respect of the Convention on Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Intercountry Adoption that has been brought to the attention of the Directeur de l'état civil by the ministre de la Santé et des Services sociaux or the clerk of the Court of Québec. 

To entitle the applicant to the tax credit, the adoption expenses must be paid after the ministre de la Santé et des Services sociaux or an agency certified by the Ministère has opened an adoption file. 

 

Where do I claim this?

Federal and provincial tax credits (except Québec)

Note: To claim the provincial credit for adoption expenses, you must file your spouse’s or common-law partner’s return at the same time as yours. H&R Block’s Tax Software automatically calculates the credit amount and transfers it to the necessary provincial form at the end of the tax return.

Important: Before you begin, you must make sure that you have told us about your dependant for whom you are claiming adoption expenses. To do this:

  1. Click the HOME tab.
  2. Click the ABOUT YOUR DEPENDANTS link. Enter all the required information about your dependants.

Note: If you want to enter more than one dependant, click the +Add Another Dependant button on your screen.

Once you have told us about your dependant, follow these steps to claim Adoption expenses:

  1. Click the name of your dependant on the left-hand navigation panel. You will find yourself here:
  2. Under the EXPENSES section, click the checkbox for Adoption expenses (Schedule 1/TP-1029.8.63).
  3. Scroll to the bottom of the page and click Continue.

When you arrive at the page for Adoption expenses, enter your information into the tax software.

Where can I learn more?