The Search and Rescue Volunteer Tax Credit (SRVTC) has been introduced for the 2014 taxation year. This non-refundable federal tax credit will give search and rescue volunteers the same tax treatment as volunteer fire fighters. The eligible portion of the credit is $3,000 and can result in a total tax savings up to $450 for an eligible volunteer.
In order to qualify, the volunteer must engage in at least 200 hours of eligible service in the year. Eligible services include responding to and being on call for search and rescue and related emergency calls as a search and rescue volunteer, attending meetings held by the fire department, or participating in required training related to the search and rescue services.
As a search and rescue volunteer, a taxpayer may receive up to $1,000 as tax exempt income. However, if they claim this exemption, they cannot also claim both the SRVTC. As well, a person cannot claim both the SRVTC and the Volunteer Fire Fighters Tax Credit.
Qualifying organizations must be members of the Search and Rescue Volunteer Association of Canada, the Civil Air Search and Rescue Association, the Canadian Coast Guard Auxiliary, or an organization whose status is recognized by a provincial, municipal or public authority.