Supporting Canada's Families
Click here to see what Prime Minister Harper & Michelle Rempel have done for Canadian Families
Our Conservative Government supports hard-working Canadian families. That’s why, under the strong leadership of Prime Minister Harper, our Government has introduced measures to help families keep more of their hard-earned money in their pockets.
Since 2006, we’ve reduced the overall tax burden to its lowest level in 50 years.
100% of families with children will benefit from lower taxes and increased benefits. Because of our Government’s tax cuts and increased benefits a typical two-earner Canadian family of four will receive tax relief and increased benefits of up to $6,600 in 2015.
Tax Relief for Families and for All Canadians
Our Government reduced the GST from 7% to 6% on July 1, 2006, and to 5% on January 1, 2008.
The GST credit for low- and modest-income Canadians was maintained even though the GST rate was reduced. Maintaining the credit, while reducing the GST rate to 5% from 7%, translated into more than $1.1 billion in benefits annually for low- and modest-income Canadians.
Since forming Government, we’ve introduced a number of other important tax-saving measures, including:
- increasing the basic personal amount — the amount of income that all Canadians can earn without paying federal income tax — to $11,327
- delivering the landmark Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA) in 2008, which provides a flexible,
registered, general-purpose account that allows Canadians to maximize their savings by earning tax-free investment income
- In Economic Action Plan 2015 we doubled the annual contribution limit on TFSAs from the
initial $5,000 to $10,000.
- reducing the lowest personal income tax rate from 16% to 15%
- introducing a number of tax credits, including:
- the Children’s Fitness Tax Credit (2006) for parents who enrol their children in sports (this
was doubled in 2015 to $1,000)
- the Public Transit Tax Credit (2006) to help the environment by encouraging people to use
- the Children’s Arts Tax Credit (2011) providing relief on up to $500 of eligible expenses
for programs associated with children’s artistic, cultural, recreational and developmental
- the Canada Employment Credit (2006) to give a tax break to working Canadians
- the Working Income Tax Benefit (2007) to help Canadians get over the “welfare wall” and
effectively doubling this in our Economic Action Plan
- the Volunteer Firefighters Tax Credit (2011) for volunteer firefighters who perform at least
200 hours of service for their communities
- the Search and Rescue Volunteers Tax Credit (2014) in recognition of the service of our ground, air and marine search and rescue volunteers
- the Child Tax Credit (2007), a non-refundable child tax credit for parents based on an amount
of $2,000 (indexed) for each child under the age of 18, that is now folded into the Universal
Child Care Benefit
- the temporary Home Renovation Tax Credit (which was available for the 2009 taxation year),a
timely and effective stimulus to the Canadian economy which boosted energy efficiency and
the value of Canada’s housing stock introduced in the Economic Action Plan
- the Adoption Expense Tax Credit (2013) to better recognize the costs of adopting a child
- the Family Caregiver Tax Credit (2011), a 15% non-refundable credit on an amount of $2,000
that will provide tax relief to caregivers of all types of infirm dependent relatives including,
for the first time, spouses, common-law partners and minor children
- doubling the Pension Income Credit amount to $2,000 from $1,000 and increasing the Age Credit amount by $2,000 over the past five years
- increasing the spousal and eligible dependant amounts to equal the basic personal amount,
- removing the limit on the amount of eligible expenses that caregivers can claim under the Medical Expense Tax Credit
- enabling Canadians to save more for a child’s education by increasing the lifetime limit on RESP contributions, increasing the annual Canada Education Savings Grant amount, and expanding RESP access to part-time and apprenticeship students
- expanding health-related tax relief under the Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax
(GST/HST) and income tax systems to better meet the health care needs of Canadians
- announcing $76 million in annual tariff relief on baby clothing and sports and athletic equipment to help reduce the gap in retail prices that Canadian consumers pay compared to those in the U.S.
- introducing a temporary First-Time Donors Super Credit for first-time claimants of the Charitable Donations Tax Credit to encourage young Canadians to donate to charity
- introducing important savings plans, including:
- the Registered Disability Savings Plan (2007), which helps parents and guardians save to
ensure the long-term financial security of a child with a severe disability
- the Pooled Registered Pension Plan (2010) to allow individuals to team up and pool their
resources using a registered financial institution that will allow the self-employed to
- increasing the Child Care Expense Deduction (CCED) by $1,000. The CCED allows child care
expenses to be deducted from income when those expenses are incurred to earn employment or business income, pursue education or perform research
- introducing the Family Tax Cut: allowing a spouse to transfer up to $50,000 of taxable income to aspouse in a lower tax bracket, for a maximum benefit of $2,000
Further Support for Families
To better support hard-working Canadian families, our Government:
- supported choice in child care by creating, expanding and enhancing the Universal Child Care
Benefit; the enhanced and expanded UCCB provides up to $1,920 per year for each child under
the age of 6, and up to $720 per year for children aged 6 through 17
- raised the level at which the National Child Benefit supplement for low-income families and the
Canada Child Tax Benefit are phased out.
- expanded Employment Insurance parental benefits to include parents who adopt a child
- extended Employment Insurance Compassionate Care Benefits from six weeks to six months