You can claim the federal spouse or common-law partner amount if at any time in the year you supported your spouse or common-law partner and his or her net income for the year was less than $11,474 (or $13,595 if you’re claiming the family caregiver amount for your spouse).
If you were living with your spouse on December 31, 2016, use his or her net income for the whole year regardless of when you got married, became a common-law partner, or got back together with your spouse during the year.
Keep in mind, both of you can’t claim this amount for each other for the same year.
Provincial/territorial tax credit
If you’re eligible for the federal spouse or common-law partner amount, you’ll also be able to claim a corresponding provincial/territorial tax credit (except Québec), which might vary based on the province or territory you live in:
- British Columbia
- New Brunswick
- Newfoundland and Labrador
- Northwest Territories
- Nova Scotia
- Prince Edward Island
My spouse and I separated during the year, can I still claim this amount?
Yes. However, if you and your spouse separated in 2016 because of a breakdown in your relationship and you weren’t back together on December 31, 2016, you’ll need to reduce your claim only by your spouse's net income before the separation. If you reconciled with your spouse before the end of 2016, you can claim the full amount for a spouse or common-law partner and any amounts that are available for transfer from them.
If you had to make support payments to your current or former spouse and you were separated for only part of 2016, you can claim either the:
- deductible part of the support amounts you paid in the year to your spouse or
- amount for a spouse or common-law partner
Where can I claim this?
H&R Block’s tax software will automatically claim the amount for a spouse or common-law partner if you and your spouse are preparing your returns together (a coupled return). If you’re preparing your return separate from your current spouse or if you separated from your spouse during the year, you’ll need to enter his or her net income into the designated field of your Schedule 2.
Note: You can find your Schedule 2 on the PREPARE tab under the OTHER icon: