So the concept of a spousal RRSP really is a good thing if your household is a SINGLE income household (or if only 1 of the income will have a pension). It allows for a “load sharing” arrangement for income, which then means lower taxes and better things all around for the retired couple.
Are there other things that a spousal RRSP can get you? Funny you should ask that question, because I checked the Revenue Canada site for that exact question and found out that after three years of sitting in a Spousal RRSP the money there is effectively owned by the Spouse, if the spouse withdraws money from the RRSP. Here is there example as well:
In May 2002, Joshua started contributing to his wife Keri’s RRSP. He contributed the following amounts to her RRSP:
In 2005, Keri withdrew $4,000 from her spousal RRSP. Before 2005, she had not withdrawn any amounts from her spousal RRSP.
Keri determines that Joshua has to include $4,000 in his income on line 129 of his 2005 return, since the amount Joshua has to include as income is the lesser of:
- the amounts he contributed to all spousal RRSP for his wife in 2003, 2004, and 2005 ($5,000); and
- the amount his wife withdrew from her spousal RRSP in 2005 ($4,000).
Keri does not include any amount in her income for this withdrawal.
Flaw in the Model
So this example shows that if Keri took the money out BEFORE three years it is taxed in her husband’s hands, however if she had waited until 2006, she could have withdrawn
$2,000.00 and it would have been taxed as income in HER hands, not her husbands.
Something to keep in mind. Check out the Revenue Canada site to be sure on this one!