What's new for the 2018 tax-filing season

This tax-filing season, many important changes and improvements were made to services, benefits, and credits for Canadians. Here's what you need to know:

New and improved benefits and credits

- Canada child benefit (CCB) – The CCB is a tax-free monthly payment made to eligible families to help them with the cost of raising children under the age of 18. The CCB might include the child disability benefit and any related provincial and territorial programs. It replaces the Canada child tax benefit, national child benefit supplement and the universal child care benefit.
- Northern residents deductions – If you have lived, on a permanent basis, in a prescribed northern or intermediate zone for a continuous period of at least six consecutive months, you may be eligible for a deduction. For 2016 and later years, the basic and the additional residency amounts used to calculate the northern residents deductions will be increased from $8.25 to $11 per day.
- Eligible educator school supply tax credit – Eligible educators may be able to claim a 15% refundable tax credit based on up to $1,000 of eligible teaching supplies bought during the tax year.

Other Changes

- Income splitting tax credit – The family tax cut has been eliminated for the 2016 year and future tax years. However, if you are receiving a pension, you may be able to split your eligible pension income with your spouse or common-law partner to reduce your taxes.
- Home accessibility tax credit (HATC) – For 2016 and subsequent tax years, you can claim a non-refundable tax credit for eligible expenses incurred for work performed or goods acquired for a qualifying renovation of an eligible dwelling of a qualifying individual.
- Reporting the sale of your principal residence – Starting with the 2016 tax year, you are required to report basic information (date of acquisition, proceeds of disposition (e.g. sale) and address) on your tax return when you sell your principal residence to claim the full principal residence exemption. You do not have to pay tax on any capital gain when you sell your house if it was your principal residence for all the years you owned it and you did not use any part of it to earn income
- UCCB has been replaced with Child Tax Benefit, a non-taxable income but family income dependant.
- Canada learning bond-based in part of number of qualified children and adjusted income of co-habitating spouse or common law partner.

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Rhonda Cockwill CPA, CGA of Rhonda Cockwill Professional Corporation is accepting new corporate and personal tax clients. She would happily take the stress out of taxes for you. Book your appointment today by calling 403-851-2002 or emailing [email protected].