Federal Budget: measures affecting individuals

This afternoon, Canada's Minister of Finance, Bill Morneau, tabled his government's budget for 2018-2019. The budget calls for an $18.1B deficit for 2018-2019. 

The budget contains many fiscal measures for individuals. 

Employment insurance measures
The budget proposes employment insurance measures, in particular:
  • instituting a new employment insurance parental sharing benefit, effective June 2019. This benefit will provide additional weeks of employment insurance parental benefits when both parents agree to share parental leave. This measure, which draws inspiration from the Quebec parental insurance plan, will apply to residents of Canadian provinces other than Quebec;
  • making the pilot project aimed at encouraging a beneficiary to work while receiving benefits permanent, and expanding its scope. This pilot project was set to end in August 2018.
Canada Workers Benefit 
The budget proposes to change the name of the refundable tax credit currently known as the "Working Income Tax Benefit" to the "Canada Workers Benefit". In 2019, the amount of the benefit will be 26% of each dollar earned above $3,000, up to a maximum benefit of $1,355 for single recipients without dependents, and $2,335 for families. The benefit will be reduced by 12% of adjusted net income over $12,820 for single recipients without dependents and $17,025 for families.

Deductibility of Employee Contributions to the Enhanced Portion of the Quebec Pension Plan (QPP)

The budget proposes to allow a deduction for employee contributions (as well as the "employee" share of contributions paid by self-employed workers) to the enhanced portion of the QPP. This measure will come into effect in 2019. 

Registered Disability Savings Plan (RDSP) - Qualifying plan holders
The budget proposes to extend until 2023 the temporary measure that allows a qualifying family member (a parent, spouse or common-law partner) to be the RDSP plan holder for an adult who is unable to enter into a contract. A qualifying family member who becomes a plan holder before the end of 2023 will be able to remain the plan holder after that.

Other Measures
The budget proposes other measures targeting individuals, in particular: 

  • adding expenses incurred in respect of an animal specially trained to perform tasks for a patient with a severe mental impairment in order to assist them in coping with their impairment to the list of eligible expenses for the Medical Expense Tax Credit. This measure applies to eligible expenses incurred after 2017;
  • extending eligibility for the mineral exploration tax credit to flow-through share agreements entered into before April 1, 2019.
Other measure 
Advisory Council on the Implementation of a National Pharmacare Program

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In the framework of the budget, the government has created the Advisory Council on the Implementation of a National Pharmacare Program so that all Canadians can get the medicine they need.

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