The T2202 Form: A Guide to Deducting Tuition

September 25th, 2020

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If you are a student who paid tuition and fees for a qualifying education program at a designated educational institution, a T2202 form will be issued to you. This form will allow you to claim a deduction for paid tuition on your income tax return.

What is the T2202 Tax Form?

The T2202 tax form is known as the Education and Textbook Amounts Certificate. This federal form certifies a student’s eligibility for education and textbook amounts and indicates the maximum student tax deductions for tuition, education, and textbook amounts that can be claimed on their income tax return. T2202 is issued for the calendar year when a student is enrolled.

What are the Eligibility Criteria?

The student must be at least sixteen years old by the end of the year to receive a T2202.

A student must be enrolled in a designated educational institution in a qualifying education program. A designated educational institution is a Canadian university, college, or other institution providing courses at a post-secondary level. This also includes an institution for courses that improve skills in an occupation, certified by Human Resources and Skills Development Canada.

For an institution located outside Canada, the student must be enrolled for a course leading to a bachelor’s level degree or higher for at least 13 consecutive weeks.

A qualifying education program is one where a student is enrolled full-time and the program lasts at least three weeks and requires a minimum of ten hours of coursework per week.

Eligibility for Part-Time students

Students who are enrolled part-time are eligible to claim a deduction provided the part-time program lasts at least three consecutive weeks with a minimum of twelve hours of coursework per month.

When do you receive the T2202 form?

You will either receive a physical copy or you can download a copy of the T2202 form around the third week of February. This will include all the tuition and fees paid for the preceding year.

Do you have to include the T2202 form along with your income tax return?

The T2202 form does not need to be included with your tax return. A schedule 11 tax form is required to be included with your income tax return.

How to Complete the Schedule 11 Form?

The Schedule 11 tax form must include the following information:

Line 1: Enter any unused tuition, education, and textbook amounts.Line 2 (field 320): Eligible tuition fees from T2202.Line 10: Total tuition, education, and textbook amounts.Lines 11 to 18 are used to transfer or carry forward unused current-year amounts.Lines 11-13 and Line 18 must be completed for any unused current-year amounts which are not being transferred to another individual.

Students who are transferring an amount to another individual must complete the appropriate area of your tax certificate at the bottom of the T2202.

Are all Tuition, Fees, and Expenses Deductible?

While it may seem like a great deal to continue your education with the hope that you can claim all of your education-related expenses, it is unlikely that the figure on the T2202 form will match the total amount you paid for tuition.

Not all expenses, fees, tuition is tax-deductible – these include payments towards meal plans, parking, lodging, health and dental insurance, uniforms, tools, laboratory fees, facilities fees, and any administrative expenses.

You may want to be cautious about spending too much under the false hope of being able to claim all your expenses at the end of the year.

Tax-Filing for International Students

International students fall under multiple residency classes which determines their tax-filing status.


International students in Canada who are required to file an income tax return for earning income in Canada can use the T2202 form to claim any deductions and reduce the taxes they owe.

To determine if you are a resident and are required to file a tax return is based on possessing certain ties in Canada. Ties considered by CRA include:

  • Owning or Renting a home in Canada
  • Social ties in Canada
  • You have a spouse/partner/dependents who live with you
  • Having a Canadian driver’s license
  • Having a Canadian bank account
  • Having a Canadian credit card
  • Having health insurance with a Canadian province or territory
  • Owning a car

Deemed Resident of Canada

If an international student fails to establish any residential ties with Canada, they may be considered deemed residents. To be considered a deemed resident, the following criteria must be met:

  • The international student must have lived in Canada for 183 days or more in a calendar year.
  • The students’ home country and Canada have a tax treaty, wherein the student is not considered to be a resident of the home country under this treaty.

Both residents and deemed residents are required to file an income tax return.

Non-resident of Canada

If an international student fails to establish any residential ties with Canada, and they are a resident of their home country, they are considered non-residents of Canada.

Non-residents and deemed non-residents must follow the tax filing rules for non-residents of Canada.

Transferring Tuition Tax Credits

All T2202s issued by an educational institution are in the name of the student enrolled in the eligible program. Students use this form to claim all the tuition and fees paid to ensure they do not owe any taxes to the CRA.

A student has the option to transfer a maximum of $5,000 of the current year’s federal tuition amount, and where available, the applicable maximum for provincial and territorial tuition, education, and textbook amounts, minus the amount used to reduce tax owing as calculated on Schedule 11.

The student can either transfer the entire amount or a portion of the amount to:

  • their spouse or common-law partner
  • their parent or grandparent, or their spouse's or common-law partner's parent or grandparent

To transfer the amount, the student must complete the transfer section of the certificate received from your school.

Students can carry forward their current year’s unused federal tuition fees (that were not transferred) to claim in a future year. You have to claim your carry forward amount in the first year that you have to pay income tax. To calculate the amount you are carrying forward, you have to file an income tax and benefit return and complete Schedule 11.

In conclusion, Form T2202 is a great way for students to claim deductions while pursuing their education and can significantly lower the amount of taxes you owe. For a detailed analysis of your T2202 form, consult a tax advisor.

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