Finances

Tax matters: how to claim the adoption tax credit

Source: 
Focus on Adoption Magazine

It’s everyone’s favourite time of year again: tax time! This year a reader asked us for help understanding how to claim Canada’s adoption tax credit. In this article, adoptive dad and financial professional John Hakkarainen returns for the third year in a row—this time, to explain the nuts and bolts of line 313.

What is the adoption tax credit and why it is important?

My children often tell me that my jokes are taxing! I am hoping that the guide below helps you to reduce your tax liability so that you have more money to spend on cheese.

Tax matters: The Adoption Tax Credit

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

It’s everyone’s favourite time of year again: tax time! This year a reader asked us for help understanding how to claim Canada’s adoption tax credit. In this article, adoptive dad and financial professional John Hakkarainen returns for the third year in a row—this time, to explain the nuts and bolts of line 313.

Adoption and your taxes

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Are you planning to adopt a child?

Financial help for adoptive families

One of the most obvious challenges adoptive parents face is the significant cost associated with the adoption process. But no matter what stage of the process you are in—whether you’re just thinking about adoption, you’re already working with an adoption agency, or you’ve recently celebrated the arrival of your child—it’s important to know the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has credits and benefits designed to help adoptive parents shoulder the financial burden.

Financing your adoption

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Earlier this year, my wife and I started getting serious about the adoption process. My first question was, “How long will the adoption process take?” As a financial advisor, my next question was, “What are the associated costs?”

Each family’s cost will vary depending on their adoption path (international, domestic newborn, or Ministry of  Children and Family Development). No matter which path you take, there will be some costs. The reality of  children, and adoption, is that the costs associated with the process are only a small portion of the total funds needed to raise a child.

US taxes hit home in Canada

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Editor's note: This article was published in 2012. Please make sure you check with Canada Revenue and the IRS for up to date information.

All children born in the USA and adopted by Canadians over the past number of years (of which there are several hundred) are US citizens. This, of course, brings with it a number of rights and responsibilities. For example, they can be subject to a military draft.

Parenting special needs kids

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Most parents shy away from adopting children with special needs. Here we meet parents who actually want to.

When I interviewed Carrie Hohnstein, mom of 11 children, I probed for quotes that might offer hints of the constant drama and stress that I assumed was an inevitable feature of her life.

There were slim pickings. Carrie just isn’t a dramatic person. She’s calm, thoughtful, and unflappable—qualities which are probably central to her success as a parent in a large family.

Adoptive parents invest more in their children

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

Adoptive parents invest more time and financial resources in their children, compared with biological parents. That’s the finding of a US study that challenges the more conventional view - emphasized in legal and scholarly debates - that children are better off with their biological parents.

The study, involving around 13,000 US households that included first-graders, found that two-parent adoptive parents not only spend more money on their children, but they invest more time, such as reading to them, talking to them about their problems or eating meals together.

Birth parent expenses and USA adoptions

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

The Adoption Act 1996, regulates adoptions in BC, and is specific about what birth mother expenses prospective adoptive parents might expect to pay [see sidebar]. Medical expenses related to the prenatal care and birth of the baby are not usually covered unless the mother doesn't have medical coverage from any other source. Thankfully, our Medical Services Plan will almost always cover these expenses.

This is not the case in the United States—a fact that prospective adoptive parents considering US adoption need to consider.

Canada’s top employers and adoption benefits

Source: 
Focus on Adoption magazine

It is difficult to conceive why new adoptive parents would not receive employee benefits equal to those biological parents enjoy. As every adoptive parent knows, the process of bringing children home for the first time, introducing them to their new home, and establishing a strong parent-child bond, takes considerable time and work.

However, employers still don’t offer new adoptive parents the same employee benefits as biological parents, particularly in respect to those employers that top up the Employment Insurance payments given by the Canadian government.

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