Splitting RRIF income with wife

Question: When I transfer my RRSP content to an RRIF I am allowed to specify my wife’s age –  nine years younger –  which means I benefit from a lower amount of mandatory withdrawal from the RRIF, over time. Given this set of circumstances, am I allowed to split the withdrawal amount with her so that it will be taxed in her hands rather than the full amount in mine? – H.M.


I’m afraid not. You’re correct about using the age of the younger spouse but splitting income between the two of you to reduce taxes is absolutely not allowed. This is where a spousal RRSP would have worked to your advantage had you created one years ago. Some of the money that is in your RRIF would instead have ended up in your spouse’s plan and she would have been able to convert that into her own RRIF at the appropriate time. That would have allowed for the income-splitting you’re looking for, but I’m afraid it’s too late.

The only way in which you would be able to split RRIF income with your spouse would be under a settlement arrangement if the two of you should split up. It seems like a rather extreme way tsave a few tax dollars! – G.P.