What is the public transit tax credit?
This federal non-refundable tax credit is designed to encourage people to use public transit and to offset its cost for Canadians.
What is covered by the tax credit?
The passes you buy must allow for unlimited travel in Canada on:
- local buses
- commuter trains or buses
- local ferries
What kind of passes are allowed?
- Weekly passes if you buy them for at least 4 consecutive weeks and they allow unlimited use for 5 to 7 days
- Monthly passes (or for longer periods)
- Some electronic payment cards
- Some shorter duration passes
What if my transit pass was included in my tuition fees?
In that case, your educational institution will give you a separate receipt.
What happens if my employer paid for public transit?
In that case, the amount is a taxable benefit included in your employment income. It will appear on your T4 slip and you can claim the full amount on your Schedule 1, when you enter information about your T4. Just make sure you have not deducted the amount somewhere else on your return.
Can I claim only my own transit passes?
You or your spouse or common-law partner can claim the cost of transit:
- for yourself
- for your spouse or common-law partner
- for your or your spouse’s or common-law partner’s children who were under 19 years of age on December 31, 2012.
What documents do I need to have?
Generally, keep the passes themselves, showing their duration, date of validity, name of transit authority, amount paid, and name or unique identifier of the rider. If you don’t have all that information, keep the receipts, cancelled cheques or credit card statements indicating the date and the amount of payment.
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