Lines 230 and 220 – Support payments made
On this page
- Reporting support payments on your income tax return
- Year of change in marital status
- Retroactive lump-sum payments
- Reimbursement of support payments
- Legal fees
- Supporting documents
Reporting support payments on your income tax return
If you are claiming deductible support payments, enter on line 230 of your income tax and benefit return the total amount of support payments you paid under all court orders and written agreements, including any non-deductible child support payments you made. Do not include amounts you paid that are more than the amounts specified in the order or agreement, such as pocket money or gifts that you sent directly to your children.
Enter on line 220 the deductible part of the support payments that you paid.
Complete both line 230 and line 220 correctly to avoid your claim being delayed or disallowed.
You also have to register your court order or written agreement with us. For more information, see Registering your court order or written agreement.
Diane and Gene recently divorced. In their court order made in December 2014, Gene was ordered to pay Diane $1,000 per month for their two children and $500 per month in spousal support.
Gene started making monthly support payments of $1,500 in January and paid a total of $18,000 for 2015.
Gene enters the total support payments amount of $18,000 on line 230 of his 2015 tax return. On line 220, he enters the deductible part of his support payments, which is the spousal support amount of $6,000.
Year of change in marital status
If you had to make support payments for a child and you were separated from your spouse or common-law partner for only part of that year because of a breakdown in your relationship, you have a choice. You may claim either any deductible support amounts paid for that year or, if you qualify, any applicable non-refundable tax credit, whichever is more beneficial to you.
However, if you only had to make spousal support payments and you were separated from your spouse or common-law partner for only part of that year because of a breakdown in your relationship, you may be able to claim the total spousal support amounts paid for that year and, if you qualify, any applicable non-refundable tax credit for your children.
If you reconciled before the end of that year and you choose to claim the spouse or common-law partner amount, you may also qualify to claim the non-refundable tax credit amounts transferred from your spouse or common-law partner.
If you are claiming non-refundable tax credit amounts instead of the support payments, enter the total support paid on line 230, and zero on line 220. Otherwise, we will have no record of your payments.
If you have more than one recipient to whom you are making support payments, your tax situation may vary. For more information, see Income Tax Folio S1-F3-C3, Support Payments.
Roger and Mary separated on September 1, 2015. Under the terms of the written agreement, beginning on that date Roger pays $300 monthly in spousal support. Mary had no other income in 2015.
When filing his 2015 income tax and benefit return, Roger could deduct either:
- the support he paid ($300 × 4 months = $1,200)
- the spouse or common-law partner amount for Mary (line 303 of the income tax and benefit return)
Since Mary had no other income, Roger would be entitled to the full spouse or common-law partner amount. Therefore, Roger decides to claim the spouse or common-law partner amount at line 303 since it is the most beneficial. He should enter $1,200 on line 230 and zero on line 220.
Mary has to report the $1,200 she received in support payments on her 2015 income tax and benefit return.
Retroactive lump-sum payments
If your support payments fell into arrears, and you made one lump-sum payment (of at least $3,000 that you can deduct and the recipient has to report as income) to bring your requirements for previous years up to date, give the recipient of the support payments a completed Form T1198, Statement of Qualifying Retroactive Lump-Sum Payment.
Reimbursement of support payments
A reimbursement of support payments received under a court order must be included in income on lines 156 and 128 of your income tax and benefit return for the year it is received. This applies if you deduct the amount on that income tax and benefit return, or if you deducted it in a previous year.
A payer cannot claim legal fees (at line 220, 221 or 232) to:
- get a separation or divorce
- establish, negotiate, or contest the amount of support payments
- establish child custody or visitation rights
When you file your income tax and benefit return, do not send any documents. Keep them in case we ask to see them.
However, if we ask for receipts, acceptable receipts must indicate your name, the date of payment, and the amount you paid.
Any of the following receipts may be accepted to support your claim:
- cancelled cheques or cheque images (you must submit legible photocopies of both sides of the cheque)
- bank and employer statements if they indicate a transfer of funds from the payer's account or paycheque to either the recipient's account or to a provincial agency and the amounts are equal or less than the amounts specified in the court order or written agreement
- statement or letter from the maintenance enforcement program (for example, provincial agency) supporting the actual amount of support paid under the court order or written agreement
- signed receipts from the recipient showing the total amount paid in the year
Forms and publications
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