Student. Worker. Senior. If you’re of legal age, you might qualify for the Ontario Trillium Benefit (OTB), a tax benefit designed to help people with low and moderate incomes offset the cost of the sales taxes they’ve paid out, heating their homes, and their rent or property taxes.
What Is the Ontario Trillium Benefit (OTB)?
The benefit rolls three existing tax credits into one:
- the Ontario Sales Tax Credit
- the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit
- the Northern Ontario Energy Credit
So you will receive the Ontario Trillium Benefit if you are eligible for at least one of these tax credits.
How to Apply for the Ontario Trillium Benefit
You can apply for the Ontario Trillium Benefit each year by filling out the ON-BEN Application Form included with your income tax return.
Who Qualifies for the Ontario Trillium Benefit?
Eligibility for the Sales Tax Credit portion of the OTB is determined by your income.
To be eligible for the Ontario Energy and Property Tax Credit, you must also:
- be a resident in Ontario on December 31, 2019;
- be a resident of Ontario at the beginning of the payment month;
- had rent or property tax paid by or for you for your principal residence in Ontario;
- be 18 years of age or older, or
- be under 18 years of age and have or previously had a spouse or common-law partner, or
- be under 18 years of age and be a parent who lives or previously lived with your child.
If you live on a reserve and pay home energy costs, or if you live in a public long-term care home and pay accommodation costs, you may qualify for the energy component of the credit.
To be eligible for the Northern Ontario Energy Credit, you must also live in Northern Ontario.
How Is the Ontario Trillium Benefit Calculated?
- The OTB payments for 2020 are based on your 2019 income tax return.
- The amount you receive is based on your adjusted net family income and the amount of rent or property tax you paid for your principal residence for 2019.
You can use the Ontario Ministry of Finance’s Tax Credit Calculator to determine if you qualify for the Ontario Trillium Benefit and see how much you would get.
For more information about the OTB, see the Canada Revenue Agency’s Ontario Trillium Benefit Questions and Answers.