Q&A: Adviser Compensation

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A reader would like to claim a tax deduction for adviser’s services but can’t find out what the costs are


Q – I don’t begrudge my adviser’s income. What drives me nuts is I can’t identify how much I’m paying. If I had a statement/receipt for those costs, besides commission costs, I believe I could claim them as costs for earning income. What are your thoughts? – Brian M., Pickering ON

A – You can claim advisory fees for non-registered accounts. However, only costs relating to what the Canada Revenue Agency calls “investment counseling” which generates taxable income are eligible. These include such things as advice on buying and selling securities, custodial services, trustee services, and relevant accounting services. Financial planning services are not eligible. Trading commissions are also excluded, although they can be claimed when you sell a security.

You should ask your adviser for a year-end statement detailing all eligible expenses, which can be used to support your tax claim. If he/she won’t provide the information, you may wish to look for another adviser, especially if you think the costs are significant. – G.P.




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