2022-0934561I7 Canada Child Benefit

Please note that the following document, although believed to be correct at the time of issue, may not represent the current position of the CRA. Prenez note que ce document, bien qu'exact au moment émis, peut ne pas représenter la position actuelle de l'ARC.

Principal Issues: In order to receive the CCB for a particular month, does a person have to be an eligible individual at the end of the preceding month, and continue to be so into the beginning of that particular month?

Position: No, the individual must be an eligible individual on the first of the month. The prior month is not relevant to the determination.

Reasons: The legislation.

Author: Wirag, Eric
Section: 122.6; 122.61(1)

                                                                                October 12, 2022

    Rob Meers                                                          HEADQUARTERS  
    Individual Income Tax Legislative                       Income Tax Rulings                       Amendments Section                                          Directorate
    Legislative Amendments Division                        Eric Wirag, CPA, CMA                  Legislative Policy Directorate


    Canada Child Benefits

This is in reply to Janet Schermann’s email of April 27, 2022 regarding the Canada Child Benefit (CCB). We have been provided a scenario where two ex-spouses have three children together. The children reside with the mother during the school year, but reside with their father for three weekends in each of those months. The children then reside with the father from the final day of the school year until the Tuesday after Labour day, but spend one three-day weekend in both July and August with the mother. The question is which of the parents is eligible to claim the CCB for the month of September. In addition, we have been asked to clarify whether an individual is required to be an eligible individual in the month prior to a specific month in order to receive the CCB in that specific month. We apologize for the delay of our response.

Under subsection 122.61(1) of the Income Tax Act (the Act), the amount of the CCB is determined on a monthly basis and is allowed to the person who is an “eligible individual”, in respect of a qualified dependant, at the beginning of the month.

There are numerous conditions that must be met for a person to qualify as an eligible individual, as defined in section 122.6 of the Act, including that the person resides with the qualified dependant and is either (i) the parent who primarily fulfills the responsibility of care and upbringing of the qualified dependant (but is not a shared-custody parent), or (ii) is a shared-custody parent of the qualified dependent. The preamble of the definition of eligible individual states that an “eligible individual in respect of a qualified dependant at any time means a person who at that time...”. Accordingly, the determination of eligible individual can be made at any time. However, to be entitled to the CCB for a month, it must be determined that the person is an eligible individual at the beginning of that month.

In the example provided, assuming all of the other requirements of subsection 122.6(1) are met, and that the parent’s are not “shared-custody parents” (as defined in section 122.6 of the Act) for that month, the parent who is the eligible individual at the start of September would be the eligible individual who is entitled to receive the CCB for that month.

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Yours truly,

Lita Krantz, CPA, CA
Tax Credits and Ministerial Issues
Business and Employment Division
Income Tax Rulings Directorate
Legislative Policy and Regulatory Affairs Branch

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