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Political Issues This forum is for discussing the political aspects of divorce: reform to divorce laws, men's rights, women's rights, injustices in the divorce system, etc.

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Old 07-21-2009, 06:37 PM
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Default Child Tax Benefit - presumed caregiver

Now that we are in 21st century and everyone is screaming about equal rights of parents when comes to custody and access etc, I find it very odd that CRA still presumes the female partner as primary caregiver when the spouses live together. I have the custody of my son so right now I am the primary caregiver. But what happens if I start living with a new partner? Will she be considered his primary caregiver even though she is not his biological mother? Does not make sense because she maybe at home but I won't expect her to be responsible for my son other than occasional babysitting now and then.

I was reading the CTB application forms and it appears that they combine the income of both spouses to calculate the CTB payments. Why would they add step parent's income when he/she is not even responsible for the care of my child?

Has anyone raised this kind of questions with CRA before? It would be appreciate if you could share your thoughts or knowledger with the rest of us.
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Old 07-21-2009, 08:58 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by singledad99 View Post
Now that we are in 21st century and everyone is screaming about equal rights of parents when comes to custody and access etc, I find it very odd that CRA still presumes the female partner as primary caregiver when the spouses live together. I have the custody of my son so right now I am the primary caregiver. But what happens if I start living with a new partner? Will she be considered his primary caregiver even though she is not his biological mother? Does not make sense because she maybe at home but I won't expect her to be responsible for my son other than occasional babysitting now and then.

Some what of an old "regulation" but the CTB goes along with the registration of the birth, Still done the same and goes back to when most women were stay at home moms. It has been allowed to stay as there is an increased number of single parents. Both male and female.

I was reading the CTB application forms and it appears that they combine the income of both spouses to calculate the CTB payments. Why would they add step parent's income when he/she is not even responsible for the care of my child?
When calculating it is true they use both incomes... as long as you are still together. When separated/divorced they consider only the custodial parents income and that is based on only one parent making a claim. As far as I know another partner will have no effect until you are common law or married then they will consider the household income.

Has anyone raised this kind of questions with CRA before? It would be appreciate if you could share your thoughts or knowledger with the rest of us.
A little known fact to most is that CRA can split the CTB if you apply. Sorry Moms I know I am going to get on the bad books for that one. I was reluctant to say that as I am a Mom too.
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Old 07-22-2009, 10:21 AM
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I got married last year. I will no longer recieve the child tax benefit because revenue canada determines it by the household income.

Now if my ex was decent and would spend that money on our child - bring items for her at supervised visits, I would allow him to claim it.
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Old 07-25-2009, 02:44 PM
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Sorry for the late reply. But you are right CRA will consider the household income just as it would have been before with an ex and now you are remarried.

With a shared custody and reasonable parties it can be transfered or even divided. But one would have to ask this be done.
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Old 01-29-2010, 03:39 PM
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CRA will not force you to have the female apply for the CTB, they just make that assumption if you don't indicate otherwise. When my husband and I were together, we had the CTB designated to go to him and it was not an issue.

As for getting a new partner, CRA will consider what your income tax statement says, and if you file as common law then your spouses income will be considered when determining your eligibility for CTB. It will really depend on whether or not you qualify as common law or not. There are some cases where people have been taken to court for not filling common law and losing (those cases that I have read however have been cases where a man and woman were not married, but had 4 children together, had been together for many years, owned property together etc).

I know many people who file as single because the partner they have they do not have any financial ties to, but that could be a sticky situation. Once married, presumably there's no way around both incomes being considered.
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Old 01-29-2010, 03:46 PM
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On my taxes last year the CCTB was added to my husbands income (it was lower) but the cheques still come in my name. When you are together, it doesn't matter I guess.

Now we are separated and we take turns cashing the cheque.

I think part of the reason would be that when your child is first born and you file, most mothers have the lower income and are getting EI for mat/parental leave. So it gets put in the mother's name.
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Old 01-29-2010, 03:51 PM
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When your separated, your actually supposed to let CRA know and they will automatically provide CTB to one parent for 6 months and the other for 6 months. The amount each receives is based on their respective incomes. So the higher earning parent will receive a lower CTB amount than the lower earning parent. They no longer consider the income of the person you separeated from when determining your entitlement. My husband and I are in this situation.

And since CTB is always based on last years assessment, the rates don't increase until after your decreased wages have been in effect for a years. So when I took parental leave in 2006, it wasn't until 2007 CTB that I saw the increase.
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Old 01-29-2010, 03:54 PM
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I know. There is no point to letting them know since 2009 taxes will be filed soon. At that point it will be split by them. Plus, I got just a little bit more money this year as my husband's income was lower.
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Old 01-29-2010, 05:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by momof3 View Post
When your separated, your actually supposed to let CRA know and they will automatically provide CTB to one parent for 6 months and the other for 6 months.
This certainly is not the case in my experience.
Presuming shared custody, the father must apply and demonstrate he in fact does have shared custody.

It took about 5 months to accomplish this for me, as the other party contested my application, and I had to get written confimation from three different sources indication we were sharing the child 50/50.
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Old 01-29-2010, 06:26 PM
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Right, my husband was the one originally collecting the benefits, and I did have to apply and submit a change in marital status form. Even without contesting CTB is slow about the process and does expect all that paperwork as I had to submit it regardless of the fact that the ex agreed. They say it will take up to 8 weeks to process once it gets to their office, then they send you a letter stating they need more documents and bingo the 8 weeks seems to start all over again, and they looked at my final paperwork 2 days after the cutoff for changing benefits over, so he got them for another month. It's not a fast process to get going, but as far as I can tell once it is going, the rotation just goes back and forth every 6 months.

I'm having a sortof opposite problem right now, where child tax benefits won't switch it to me being the primary caregiver now that I have my daughter full time and he won't sign paperwork indicating the change. I have been told by them that I will need a court document stating the custody arrangement change or a letter from him. So now I wait for court, which is taking a while. Sigh, I wish people would cooperate and make things easier. This is where you see who it is all about. not the kids, but the $ and who gets what.
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