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(John Tomaselli/photos.com)
(John Tomaselli/photos.com)

Understanding Tax

Tax credits and deductions: Medical and attendant care expenses Add to ...

Medical expenses for yourself, your spouse and your minor children

You can claim medical expenses for yourself, your spouse (or common-law partner) and minor children that you paid in any 12-month period that ends in the current tax year. You get a tax credit for medical expenses that are greater than 3% of your net income or $2,152 (in 2013), whichever is lower.

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Caution: If the 12-month period you choose overlaps 2 tax years, be careful not to claim the same expenses in both years.

What you can claim

You can claim expenses like premiums paid to private health care plans and the cost of eyeglasses and hearing aids. Learn more about which expenses you can claim.

What you can't claim

You can't claim expenses like fitness club fees, over-the-counter medications or cosmetic medical procedures, for example, teeth whitening, liposuction and hair transplants.

Medical expenses for other dependants

You can also claim the medical expenses of:

  • your adult dependent children or those of your spouse or common-law partner, and
  • other dependants, including parents, grandchildren, grandparents and siblings.

For each dependant:

  • You can claim medical expenses paid in any 12-month period ending in the current tax year. But you must use the same 12-month period that you use to claim your own personal medical expenses.
  • You get a tax credit for medical expenses that are greater than 3% of the dependant's net income or $2,152 (in 2013), whichever is lower.

There is no maximum limit for the total amount you can claim in a 12-month period. Before 2011, the limit was $10,000.

Two tips for claiming medical expenses:

  1. Claim medical expenses on the tax return of the lower-income family member who pays tax.
  2. Group your medical expenses into the 12-month period that gives you the biggest claim. You do not have to use the calendar year.

Attendant care expenses

You can claim:

  • the entire amount you pay for your full-time care in a nursing home (in most cases)
  • the cost of salaries and wages paid for attendant care in your home or someone else's home, a retirement home, a seniors home or other institution. The attendant must be age 18 or over and can't be your spouse or common-law partner.

Learn more about attendant care expenses.


 

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