Phone: 416-224-5959
Fax: 416-224-2772

Tax implication response

We sometimes receive questions from families asking if the services/programs their child receives through ISAND have tax implications for them. We asked our tax advisors to try to summarize the tax impact associated with a family’s involvement with Programs and Services at ISAND. As the information provided is general in nature, it will not be applicable to everyone. Please seek advice from an accountant or tax specialists to make sure your individual circumstances are considered.

This information highlights the three areas of: Disability Tax Credits; Childcare Expense Deduction; and Medical Expense Tax Credits.

Disability tax credit and other associated benefits

Whether a child can qualify for the disability tax credit depends on whether they have a disability which fits with CRA’s criteria for claiming the credit and other associated benefits. A child’s participation in an intervention program along with reports and documentation provided by ISAND will support the application for the disability credit. However, it is mainly the responsibility of the qualified medical practitioner who is completing the application on behalf of the parents to attest to the child’s disability.

Childcare expense deduction

The general requirements for an expense to qualify as deductible childcare expenses include the following:

  1. Eligible child – The child for whom the expense was incurred must be a child or dependent of the taxpayer or their spouse
  2. Expenses to enable undertaking of specific activities – The expense must enable the taxpayer or a supporting person residing with the eligible child to:
    • Perform duties of employment
    • Carry on business
    • Carry on research for which a grant is received
    • Attend secondary school or a designated educational institution
  3. Provider of childcare services – The expense must be incurred for services rendered for the care of children, certain items are listed as eligible. Below are some expenses which appear to be possibly relevant to ISAND Programs/Services:
    • Eligible childcare provider (i.e. Certain individuals or organization providing child care services)
    • An education institution for the purpose of providing childcare
  • This is not an exhaustive list of deductible expenses, and there are specific exclusions such as:
    • Amounts that would qualify for the medical expense credit (Discussed later on)
    • Cost of clothing, transport, or education, and
    • Cost of board and lodging, unless included in fees of a sports school, boarding school or summer camp, subject to certain limits

Whether any portions of program costs can be attributed to services for childcare rather than for medical (therapeutic) services or educational services will need to be determined.

Medical expense tax credit

Whether costs of the programs or services can be eligible for medical expense tax credits is dependent on whether costs can be attributed to the work of health care professionals recognized by the CRA as qualifying medical practitioners for purposes of the medical credit.

Generally, medical practitioners authorized by specific legislation to practice are recognized by the CRA for purposes of the medical credit and include:

  • Clinical Psychologist – Eligible, if licensed to practice under provincial law (e.g. College of Psychologists of Ontario)
  • Speech Pathologist – Eligible, if licensed to practice under provincial law (e.g. Certified by the Canadian Association of Speech-Language Pathologists and Audiologists (CASLPA) or a provincial affiliate)
  • Occupational Therapist – Eligible, if licensed to practice under provincial law (e.g. Member of the Canadian Association of Occupational Therapists)
  • Board Certified Behaviour Consultants (BCBA) – BCBAs are soon to be regulated in Ontario under the College of Psychologists. As they are currently unregulated, they would not qualify for the medical expense tax credit but may become eligible after regulation in Ontario.
  • Registered Behavioral Therapist (RBT) – As RBTs work in the field of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) which is yet to be regulated in Ontario, they would not qualify for the medical expense tax credit similar to BCBAs.

If a child is eligible for the disability credit, claiming therapy costs under the program as medical credits might become easier. A separate provision under the Tax Act allows for claiming medical credits on therapy costs for a patient with ‘severe and prolonged impairment’, along with other requirements one of which is the therapy must be prescribed by and administered under the general supervision of a medical doctor or psychologist. Determination of whether the service or program meets these criteria (assuming disability credit eligibility) would be based on the facts of the situation (e.g. level of involvement in the supervision by a psychologist) and not solely based on whether a prescribed medical practitioner is involved at all in the program.

Community Resources

Autism Ontario

Autism Ontario is a charitable organization with a 46-year history of representing the thousands of people on the autism spectrum and their families across Ontario. Made up of knowledgeable parents, professionals, and autistic self-advocates, Autism Ontario is the province’s leading source of information and referral on autism and one of the largest collective voices representing the autism community.
The Autism Ontario website contains a vast collection of autism-related resources, including basic information, advocacy tool-kits, deep dives into specific topics, expert-led webinars, and access to autism professionals across Ontario.

Pediatric Dentistry at Holland Bloorview

Pediatric dentistry at Holland Bloorview provides general dental services, including cleanings and fillings, to children and young adults (ages birth to 22 years) with disabilities and/or complex medical needs, including autism spectrum disorder and anxiety.
In some cases, clients may be eligible for treatment under general anesthesia.
Their services are also offered to siblings of clients.

For more information about Holland Bloorview’s dental services, including their Cleft Lip and Palate/ Craniofacial Dental Program, visit www.hollandbloorview.ca/dentalservices.

What Is a Birth Injury?

A birth injury describes any type of injury that a baby suffers before, during, or directly after childbirth.

Many babies suffer from minor injuries during delivery that do not need to be treated and often heal on their own in days or weeks. Some birth injuries can lead to more severe complications, resulting in your child having a disability for the rest of their life.

Birth Defects vs Birth Injuries

There is a significant difference between birth defects and birth injuries. The main differentiator between a birth defect and a birth injury is how they develop.

Birth Defects

Abnormalities that typically form while a child is still in the womb. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), birth defects typically develop within the first three months of pregnancy. Factors such as drug use, family medical history, and untreated infections may increase the risk of birth defects.

Birth Injuries

Generally happen when the child is being born. Common injuries that occur during childbirth include physical head trauma and brain bleeds.

Birth Injury Causes

Birth injuries can be a result of brain damage caused by several risk factors and conditions during childbirth. Each cause is distinct and can lead to different types of birth injuries.

Read More

Getting Ready for Your Appointment

We know that going to new places, and meeting new people, can cause worry and stress.  Read one of these stories ahead of your visit, at a time when your child is calm and attentive.  Together you will see photos of our offices, learn about some activities, and see other children having fun here.  The story can help you and your child get familiar with ISAND.  Read it a few times before you come, and talk about what might happen during the visit.  It helps to know more ahead of the appointment, and then the new things do not seem so scary! If you haven’t contacted us already, start by sending us an Intake Form. To find out more, visit our Team page to meet our staff members.

To learn about how social narratives can help your child make sense of new experiences, click here: https://autismcanada.org/living-with-autism/treatments/non-medical/communication/social-stories/.

To create your own social narratives, visit: https://www.autismspeaks.ca/science-services-resources/resources/templates-for-personalized-teaching-stories/.

We look forward to seeing you soon!