MP Guy Lauzon writes: Our Government is committed to keeping taxes low for hardworking Canadians and their families. The average family of four now benefits from over $3,200 in extra tax savings, and the federal tax burden for all Canadians is the lowest it’s been in 50 years. We have established a number of important tax relief measures that have proved extremely popular that I would like to tell you about.
In 2011, over 1.5 million Canadians claimed the Children’s Fitness Tax Credit, a non-refundable tax relief measure that helps offset the costs of organized sports and fitness programs for children, such as hockey and soccer. Like the Children’s Fitness Tax Credit, the Children’s Arts Tax Credit is also available for a wide range of supervised activities, such as arts and crafts programs, music lessons, drama camps, tutoring, and 4-H. In its first year, over 460,000 families claimed the Children’s Arts Tax Credit.
As you may be aware, the Tax Free Savings Account, or TFSA, lets you earn investment income on your savings— tax-free. They are a wonderful way to save for short- and long-term goals. One of the best aspects of the TFSA is its flexibility. You can withdraw money from a tax-free savings account at any time and pay no additional tax on it. We are now in our fifth year of the program, and, this January, the TFSA contribution limit grew to $5,500. Roughly 2.5 million Canadians contributed the maximum amount last year.
The First-Time Home Buyers’ Tax Credit is another tax relief measure available to Canadians. Introduced in 2009, this non-refundable tax credit is available to certain home buyers who bought a qualifying home after January 27, 2009. In a nutshell, first-time home buyers can claim a non-refundable tax credit of $750, which will reduce their taxes owing for the year.
More recently introduced is the Family Caregiver Tax Credit, which came into effect this past year.
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