Tax time: What's changed in Canada for 2019

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It’s tax season – and for people who own their own businesses, use service animals or attend post-secondary institutions, there are new rules in place this year that could affect their returns.

Many of the most notable tax changes for the 2018 tax year affect small business owners, such as the decreasing of the federal small business tax rate from 10.5 per cent to 10 per cent.

Among the tax changes unrelated to small businesses, one of the most prominent is the expansion of a tax credit for expenses related to service animals.

The credit already applies to service animals trained to help people with blindness, deafness, autism, severe diabetes, severe epilepsy and significant, long-term restrictions on the use of their arms or legs. The 2018 tax year is the first in which the credit will be available for service dogs trained to help with severe mental health issues.

This means that taxpayers can receive a credit for the cost of obtaining the animal, its food and veterinary care, and its training. Animals that provide comfort and emotional support, but do not have training to assist people living with PTSD or other mental health conditions, do not qualify for the credit.

The person must be diagnosed with a condition, and the animal [must be] specifically trained to cope with this anxiety disorder,” Lisa Gittens, a senior tax expert at H&R Block Canada, told

Another change affects people who have to move for work-related reasons. While moving expenses can still be claimed in a tax return, there is no longer a tax deduction for home-relocation loans. Read More...

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Article was originally published on: February 18, 2019