Réseau FADOQ welcomes the refundable Senior Assistance Tax Credit increase starting with the next income tax return, confirmed today in Finance Minister Eric Girard’s economic update. It will greatly benefit eligible seniors who are hard hit by the rising cost of living.
By honouring its commitment to increase this tax measure from $411 to $2,000 starting this year, the Québec government is giving seniors who are feeling the brunt of inflation some breathing room in a difficult economic climate.
“It was necessary for this bonus to apply starting with the 2022 tax return, since the inflation crisis is unfolding right now. This tax credit will be very welcome for eligible seniors and will help them pay for rent, groceries and even, for some, their medication,” says Gisèle Tassé-Goodman, president of Réseau FADOQ.
The vast majority of private pension plans, for those lucky enough to have them, are not indexed at all. In other words, for most seniors, only public plans are adjusted for cost of living. This makes them vulnerable when the cost of living increases dramatically.
With the enhancement of this tax credit, the Quebec government will be on track to meet all of the measures announced as part of its inflation shield. That would leave only the middle-class tax cut, which the government suggests could be considered in the next budget.
Looking ahead to the next budget
Obviously, there are still other ways to help seniors and to encourage their participation in society.
Regarding the upcoming budget, and given the ongoing labour shortage, Réseau FADOQ expects the government to do more for experienced workers. In particular, the Legault government must follow through on its commitment to make contributions to the Quebec Pension Plan optional for workers aged 65 and over.
In addition, Quebec should also make the career extension tax credit refundable, so that people who do not pay taxes are entitled to it.
This would be a way to motivate them to extend their careers, in a context where they are part of the solution to reduce the labour shortage.