381 – Medical expenses

On line 381, you can enter the portion of your medical expenses that is more than 3% of your income (line 275). If you had a spouse on December 31, 2015 (This link will open a new window), add to your income the amount on line 275 of your spouse's return.

You or your spouse must have paid the expenses

Note
If you are claiming on line 381 an amount for medical expenses (which is a non-refundable tax credit), you may, under certain conditions, also be able to claim the refundable tax credit for medical expenses on line 462. For more information, see point 1 in the instructions for line 462.

To qualify for the non-refundable tax credit for medical expenses that can be claimed on line 381, your expenses must be supported by receipts. Keep your receipts in case we ask for them.

Your expenses do not qualify for the tax credit if they

  • are being claimed by another person on line 381 of his or her 2015 income tax return;
  • have already been used to calculate an amount for medical expenses (line 381) in an income tax return; 
  • have been included in the amount claimed for expenses for medical services not available in your area (line 378);  
  • have been used to calculate the tax credit for home-support services for seniors (line 458); 
  • have been used by you or your spouse to calculate the independent living tax credit for seniors (line 462, point 24);
  • have been used to calculate the disability supports deduction (line 250, point 7); 
  • were paid to obtain services provided for purely cosmetic purposes;
  • were paid to obtain an in vitro fertilization treatment
    • where such expenses give entitlement to the tax credit for the treatment of infertility (see point 11 in the instructions for line 462);
    • where the treatment does not comply with the safety standards set by the Québec government (for example, a treatment administered in Québec at a centre for assisted procreation that does not hold a licence issued under the Act respecting clinical and research activities relating to assisted procreation).

The contribution to the health services fund (line 446) and the health contribution (line 448) cannot be claimed as medical expenses.

For more information, consult the brochure Medical expenses (IN-130-V).

To calculate the amount to which you are entitled, complete parts A and C of Schedule B.

Eligible medical expenses

The following are the most common eligible medical expenses:

  • payments made to a dentist, nurse, practitioner, public hospital or licensed private hospital for medical, dental or paramedical services; 
  • payments for drugs that can only be purchased if prescribed by a physician or a dentist and obtained from a licensed pharmacist. You cannot include in your medical expenses payments for drugs that are prescribed by a medical practitioner if the drugs can be purchased without a prescription;
  • the premium paid under the Québec prescription drug insurance plan for 2014, provided December 31, 2014, is included in the period of 12 consecutive months used to determine the amount of medical expenses;
  • the premium payable under the Québec prescription drug insurance plan for 2015, provided December 31, 2015, is included in the period of 12 consecutive months used to determine the amount of medical expenses. Complete Schedule K to determine the amount of your premium;
  • payments made to an insurer or a group insurance plan (This link will open a new window) to cover medical or hospital expenses for you, your spouse or a dependant, where the payments were made as a premium or contribution (including the value of the benefit related to the employer's contribution, shown in box J of the RL-1 slip or box B of the RL-22 slip) or in any other form. The amount of the payments made to an insurer or a group insurance plan may be shown in box 235 of the RL-1 or RL-2 slip;
  • payments for eyeglasses, contact lenses or other devices for the treatment or correction of a defect of vision, where such items are prescribed by an ophthalmologist or an optometrist. However, expenses for eyeglass frames are limited to $200 per person for the period of 12 consecutive months used to calculate the amount for medical expenses; 
  • reasonable moving expenses of up to $2,000, other than expenses claimed on lines 228 and 378, incurred to enable a person (yourself, your spouse or a dependant) who lacks normal physical development or has a severe and prolonged mobility impairment to move to a dwelling that is more accessible or in which the person is more mobile or functional; 
  • payments made to obtain certain devices or equipment prescribed by a practitioner, if the conditions of purchase or use are met; 
  • expenses for the transportation of a person by ambulance to or from a public hospital or a licensed private hospital; 
  • payments made for hyperbaric oxygen therapy provided to a person with a severe and prolonged neurological disorder, where a competent person attests that the person has a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions.

For more information, consult the brochure Medical Expenses (IN-130-V).

Eligible medical expenses paid or reimbursed by an employer

If you or your spouse received a taxable benefit related to eligible medical expenses paid or reimbursed by your or your spouse's employer (included in boxes A and L of the RL-1 slip), you can include the amount paid or reimbursed in your medical expenses, provided it cannot be deducted on line 236 or line 297.

Other reimbursements

You must subtract from the amount of your medical expenses any reimbursement that you, your spouse or a dependant received or is entitled to receive, unless the amount of the reimbursement must be included in your income or in that of your spouse or dependant and cannot be deducted on line 236 or line 297.

Remuneration paid to an attendant

You can include in your medical expenses the remuneration paid to an attendant who provided care to you, your spouse or a dependant, if all of the following conditions are met:

  • The person who received the care had a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions (see the instructions for line 376). 
  • The care was provided in Canada. 
  • The attendant was not your spouse and was at least 18 years of age.
  • The amount to be included in your medical expenses for the remuneration paid to an attendant does not exceed $10,000
  • No portion of the remuneration paid is being used to claim
    • childcare expenses; 
    • disability supports expenses, where the goods and services concerned enabled the person to carry out employment duties, carry on a business, do research, or attend a designated educational institution or a secondary school; 
    • fees paid for full-time residence in a nursing home (unless a receipt issued by the nursing home shows an amount specifically relating to remuneration paid to an attendant); or
    • expenses for care and training received in a school, an institution or any other place. 
  • A receipt was issued by the recipient of the remuneration. (If the recipient was an individual, his or her social insurance number must be indicated on the receipt.)

You cannot include amounts paid for the services of an attendant in your medical expenses if you or your spouse is entitled to include the amounts in the calculation of the tax credit for home-support services for seniors.

Remuneration paid to a full-time attendant

You can also include in your medical expenses the remuneration paid to a full-time attendant who provided care to you, your spouse (This link will open a new window) or a dependant (This link will open a new window). The remuneration must have been paid to a person who, at the time, was not your spouse and was at least 18 years of age. The person who received the care must have been

  • a person with a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions (see the instructions for line 376); or 
  • a person who, because of an infirmity, has been certified by a practitioner to be dependent on others for his or her personal needs and care for a prolonged period of time. The person must have received the care in the dwelling where he or she lives. In addition, a receipt must have been issued by or on behalf of the attendant to whom the remuneration was paid. (If the issuer of the receipt is an individual, his or her social insurance number must be indicated on the receipt.)

A person need not be cared for by just one attendant to be considered in the care of a full-time attendant. More than one attendant can care for the person over a given period, and there is no minimum time period during which care must be provided by any particular attendant. A person is considered in the care of a full-time attendant where he or she requires constant and continual care because of an infirmity or a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions.

Fees paid for full-time residence in a nursing home

You can also include in your medical expenses the fees for full-time residence in a nursing home that were paid for you, your spouse or a dependant. The fees must have been paid for the full-time residence of a person with a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions (see the instructions for line 376) or a person who, due to lack of normal mental capacity, has been certified by a practitioner to be dependent on others for his or her personal needs and care.

Form to enclose

As a general rule, you must enclose form TP-752.0.14-V, Certificate Respecting an Impairment, if you are claiming such fees for the first time. However, as long as you are not required to provide certification that the person concerned (you, your spouse or a dependant) has a chronic illness that requires that person to undergo, at least twice a week for a total of at least 14 hours per week, therapy essential to the maintenance of one of the person's vital functions, you can instead enclose a copy of the Canada Revenue Agency form T2201, Disability Tax Credit Certificate.

If the health of the person concerned (you, your spouse or a dependant) has improved since a document certifying the impairment was last filed, you must notify us.

Restriction

If you include in your medical expenses the remuneration paid to a full-time attendant or the fees paid for full-time residence in a nursing home for a person with a severe and prolonged impairment in mental or physical functions, it is possible that neither you nor anyone else may be entitled to claim an amount on line 376 with respect to the person's impairment. See “Remuneration paid to a full-time attendant or fees paid for full-time residence in a nursing home” in the instructions for line 376.

Person who died in 2015

If the amount for medical expenses that you are claiming includes expenses paid for a person who died in 2015, you can, for this person, use a reference period of 24 consecutive months that includes the date of death.

For all or part of the year, you or your spouse was not resident in Canada

If, for all of part of the year, you or your spouse on December 31, 2015 (This link will open a new window), was not resident in Canada, take into account only the income that you and your spouse earned while resident in Canada in calculating your family income (Part A of Schedule B).

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