You should not report your child’s income (e.g., their T4, T4A, T4A(P), or T5 slips) on your tax return.
Your child may need to file their own tax return. They may need to file a return if:
They have earned income.
It’s generally to your child’s benefit to file a tax return when they’ve earned income:
- often the income earned is low enough (below the Basic personal amount) that any tax deducted from their pay results in a refund; and
- they begin to accumulate Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) contribution room.
They want to receive some government benefits.
Canadians can start receiving the GST/HST benefit the month after their 19th birthday. This means if you turned 19 in the year, you should be filing a tax return so you don’t miss a payment.
They have eligible tuition fees.
If your child has eligible tuition fees, they’ll want to file a return to calculate their tuition tax credit. The tuition tax credit may not be needed on their return in the year, but the return still must be filed so that the tuition tax credit can either be carried forward or transferred to you.
Note that if you’re claiming your child as a dependant on your tax return, you need to include the income they have received in the net income line for that child in the Dependants section; whether or not you’re filing a tax return for them. This income information will be used in the calculation of any credits you’re claiming with respect to that child.
The CRA provides a list of all situations for when a tax return has to be filed.
You can prepare your child’s return in a new profile under your account.
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