Transit Tax Credit
Save your expired transit passes ... they’re your receipt for income tax!
Transit pass customers save even more with the Federal tax break which was introduced in 2006. You can claim a portion of the cost of your transit pass on your Income Tax Return, as well as for your dependents.
This applies to monthly, semester and 2012 annual passes, as well as the U-Pass and ECOPASS.
- Canada Revenue Agency
- Canadian Urban Transit Association
- Watch a Canada Revenue Agency videocast on how the transit tax credit works for you: www.cra-arc.gc.ca
Transit Tax Credit for 2012
In order to claim this tax credit:
1. Keep your expired transit pass as your receipt.
2. File your expired pass vouchers in a safe place.
The non-refundable tax credit for 2012 will be 15% of the cost of your pass.
The credit will apply to the portion of the cost of transit passes.
Carleton University Students:
You can download a receipt to support your U-Pass transit pass taxable deduction via your Carleton Connect account. Receipts will be available on or before February 28, 2012. If you have any questions about your U-Pass receipt, please contact the Students’ Association by phone at 613-520-7400 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org
University of Ottawa Students:
You can download a receipt to support your U-Pass transit pass taxable deduction via your uoZone student account. If you have any questions, please contact the Student Federation of the University of Ottawa by telephone at 613-562-5966 or by e-mail at email@example.com.
Your monthly transit pass shows the purchase price*, so please retain pass vouchers for Income Tax purposes.
* For Community Passes, the amount to be claimed is the actual amount paid for your passes, which would be $32 for each 2011 month of pass purchased, not the amount shown on the Community Pass.
ECOPASS payroll deductions will appear in box 84 of your T4 slip.
What is the tax credit for public transit passes?
The tax credit for public transit passes is a non-refundable tax credit for the cost of buying a monthly (or longer duration) pass for commuting on buses, streetcars, subways, commuter trains and ferries.
How do I claim the tax credit for public transit passes?
You will be able to claim the tax credit for public transit passes on your 2011 income tax return for the amounts you have paid for travel that occurs after January 2011.
What will I need to support my claim?
At a minimum, you will need to keep your expired monthly transit passes for months after January (previous year) to support your claim. If your transit pass displays all of the following information, the pass itself will be sufficient to support a claim for the tax credit:
- an indication that it is a monthly (or longer duration) pass;
- the date or period for which the pass is valid;
- the name of the transit authority or organization issuing the pass;
- the amount paid for the pass; and,
- the identity of the rider, either by name or unique identifier. If the pass does not have all of this information, you will also need to keep receipts, cancelled cheques or credit card statements, along with your pass(es), to support your claim. The credit will be available for the portion of the pass that is used on or after Jan1st, even if the pass is purchased before that date. You will not need to submit any documentation when you file your return, but you must keep it in case the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) asks for it in verifying your claim.
How much can I claim?
You can claim the full amount paid for a public transit pass, or for the cost of passes for multiple transit systems (see question below). The tax credit is a non-refundable tax credit, which means that the amount you claim is multiplied by the lowest personal income tax rate for the year (15 % for 2011) and is then deducted from your tax otherwise payable.
I use more than one method of public transit to commute. Can I claim more than one type of pass?
Yes, you can claim the full amount of any combination of transit passes.
Can I claim the credit on behalf of my family?
Yes, you can claim the tax credit for public transit passes on behalf of your spouse, common law partner, and your children under the age of 19, to the extent that these amounts have not already been claimed.
In my area, passes for January are on sale starting mid-December. If I buy my January pass in December, does it mean that I cannot claim it?
No, as long as you keep your receipt and your pass, you can claim amounts you have paid for travel that occurs after January 2011, as would be the case of your January pass, no matter when you purchased it.
Where can I get more information about this tax credit?
Additional information on how to claim the tax credit for public transit passes is posted on the Canada Revenue Agency Web site at www.cra.gc.ca.
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