Withdrawing from spousal or common-law partner RRSPs

This section will also apply to a spousal or common-law partner account under a specified pension plan (SPP).

A spousal or common-law partner RRSP is any of your RRSPs:

  • to which your spouse or common-law partner contributed;
  • that received payments or transfers of property from your RRSPs to which your spouse or common-law partner had contributed; or
  • that received payments or transfers of property from your RRIFs to which you had transferred amounts from your spousal or common-law partner RRSPs.

Generally, only the individual who is entitled to receive payments from the RRSP (the annuitant) can withdraw funds from an RRSP.

Calculating the income you and your spouse or common-law partner have to report

If you contributed to any spousal or common-law partner RRSP or your spouse’s account under an SPP in 2013, 2014 or 2015, you may have to include in your 2015 income all or part of:

  • amounts your spouse or common-law partner received in 2015 from any of his or her SPPs or unmatured spousal or common-law partner RRSPs;
  • commutation payments your spouse or common-law partner received in 2015 from any of his or her SPPs or matured spousal or common-law partner RRSPs;
  • amounts we consider your spouse or common-law partner to have received in 2015 from any of his or her SPPs or deregistered spousal or common-law partner RRSPs; and
  • amounts your spouse or common-law partner received, or those we consider he or she received, in 2015 from any of his or her spousal or common-law partner registered retirement income funds (RRIFs) that are more than the minimum amount for the year.

See Example of how much income to report on each spouse's return.

Use Form T2205, Amounts from a Spousal or Common-law Partner RRSP, RRIF or SPP to Include in Income, to determine how much to include in your and your spouse's returns.

Exceptions

The rule that requires you, the contributor, to include certain amounts from spousal or common-law partner RRSPs, spousal or common-law partner RRIFs or, a spouse’s account under an SPP as income does not apply to the following situations:

  • At the time of payment, or when we consider the payment to have been received, you and your spouse or common-law partner were living separate and apart because of the breakdown of your relationship.
  • At the time of payment, or when we consider the payment to have been received, you or your spouse or common-law partner were non-residents of Canada.
  • The amount is a commutation payment that is transferred directly for your spouse or common-law partner to another RRSP, a RRIF or an SPP or to an issuer to buy an eligible annuity that cannot be commuted for at least three years.
  • The contributor dies in the year of payment or the year we consider the payment to have been received.
  • We consider the deceased annuitant to have received the amount because of death.

In any such case, the annuitant spouse or common-law partner includes the payment in income for the year he or she receives it or is considered to have received it.

In all cases, the tax deducted has to be claimed by the individual to whom the slip is issued. In most cases, the information slip issued for the withdrawal will be in the name of the annuitant. However, report the income according to the calculations completed in Parts 1 and 2 of Form T2205.

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