If you have kids who are 16 years old and enjoy the arts, you can claim up to $500 per child in tax credits. The Children’s Arts Tax Credit is administered by the federal government. Enrolling in arts programs - that is, classes - will qualify you to claim the credit.
To be eligible, weekly programs must run for at least eight consecutive weeks, and daily programs must run over at least five consecutive days. Programs that are offered through school aren’t eligible. This means that most local arts classes and day camps will qualify, if you enroll in them privately.
Eligible activities must be arts-related. The government specifies that they should contribute to the development of creative skills or expertise in artistic or cultural activities, provide a substantial focus on wilderness and the natural environment, help children develop and use particular intellectual skills, include structured interaction among children to help them develop interpersonal skills or provide enrichment or tutoring in academic subjects. It’s a pretty broad definition, and once again, most local arts classes and day camps will fit it.
You will claim the credit when you file for your taxes. If you have any questions about whether or not a program qualifies for the credit, ask the people who run it. And be sure to keep your receipts, both for your own records and as documentation if the government asks to see them.
For up-to-date information, visit the CRA’s website.