Invest in your spouse’s name to save on taxes

Why pooling resources doesn’t always make sense

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by

From the April 2015 issue of the magazine.

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(Terry Vine/Getty Images)

(Terry Vine/Getty Images)

Pooling resources with your spouse to pay for household expenses seems like the right thing for committed partners to do. But if one of you is the breadwinner and the other earns much less income, it doesn’t make sense from a tax perspective. Instead, the higher-earning spouse should cover all the day-to-day family expenses, like buying groceries and paying the heating bill, so the lower-income spouse can make the investments. That way, all of the interest and capital gains from those investments will be taxed at the lower tax rate of the lower-income earner. The higher-earning spouse can also lend money to the lower-earning spouse to buy investments, but the Canada Revenue Agency’s prescribed interest rate of 1% must be charged.

» Giving money to a spouse

Tax savings: Possibly thousands of dollars. Depends on how well your investments do and the difference in your income.

 

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