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More tax reminders

in Case Study, Charitable Donations, Child Tax Credit, Deductions, Income Tax, T4

I have struck through the no longer valid tips, just so you can see what used to be tax deductible.

Transit Pass Credit

Remember if you take the bus (or your kids do), you can use the Public Transit Tax Credit. Remember if your kids use a bus pass the following as well:

Yes, you can claim the tax credit for public transit passes on behalf of your spouse, common law partner, and your children under the age of 19, to the extent that these amounts have not already been claimed.

So the expense is transferable as well, useful to know that one.

Education

Having a child in University means I can claim her tuition on my taxes, which is not a bad thing. Since this is the first year for me with this, it is important to get all the forms done right, so please read over the web page and such and make sure the student involved fills in all the forms to allow for the transfer of these credits to you. I am still muddling through this one and will keep you posted on my progress. 

The maximum tuition, education, and textbook amount transferred from a child (or fromeach child), is $5,000 minus the amounts that he or she uses, even if there is still an unclaimed part. Tuition, education, and textbook amounts that the student carried forward from a previous year cannot be transferred.

So $5000 max per child is another important point to remember. This is where the High Price of University comes back to help you a little.

Charitable Donations

Now is the time to rummage through your papers to find ALL the receipts that you so carefully stored away when they arrived (yes I am being sarcastic, about myself, I may one day take a picture of my home “work space” to show you just how cluttered and disorganized it is). Each one of these receipts is money back in your pocket, so make sure you find them all. 

I have a cross-reference method, since I use Quicken, I check in Quicken for my Charitable expenses and then go and hunt down the receipt (or send the charity a note asking for a duplicate).

Also make sure this is a valid charity, you can go on the CRA site to see which charities have had their Charity designations revoked.

Manual or Computer?

This is an interesting question I ask folks and sometimes get an interesting answer. I have been using various computer software to do my taxes ever since it was possible (I have a Math degree, not an Arithmetic degree), but I do know that Michael James on Money enjoys doing his taxes manually using forms and pencil.

Does anybody else use pencil and paper still? Do you use a service to make up  your taxes, and if so why? My taxes this year are going to be confusing, but still not complicated enough that I would pay to have someone else do it, but that may change in the future.


{ 3 comments }

  • The Canadian Tax Blogger February 19, 2009, 3:53 PM

    Don’t forget medical expenses. This credit can be claimed for expenses that end during any 12 month period ending in 2008.

    You should also consider combining your family’s medical expenses on one tax return.

    Reply
  • Ray February 19, 2009, 11:17 AM

    Good reminders. I would suggest try to claim any tax deduction/credit that you can not carry forward before you use any that are allowed to be carried forward.
    I personally still have student credits left, I have been able to use only a minimum portion of that and have used other types of deductions to reduce my income. But than again my income wasnt extremely high.
    I use ufile.ca online version so far it’s been very good for me. I am planning using quicktax this year but so used to ufile, and ufile has all my past information which saves me a lot of time.

    Reply
  • Michael James February 19, 2009, 8:56 AM

    Thanks for the mention. I have used tax preparation software for several years now, but it is true that it took me longer than some people to make the switch from paper forms. That was just an aversion to being on the bleeding edge. I waited to hear about user experiences before making the plunge. I do still do a few simple calculations myself, but that is mostly to make sure that I didn’t mistype a number or put a number into a wrong box somewhere.

    Reply

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