What is a Registered Retirement Savings Plan Deduction Limit

Registered retirement savings plan deduction limit is the maximum sum Canada allows taxpayers to deduct from their income when calculating tax liability. The registered retirement savings plan deduction limit, or RRSP deduction limit, is set by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). The sum of contributions made to a taxpayer's personal RRSP and his or her spouse's or common law partner's RRSP must be lower than the RRSP deduction limit or withholding taxes will be imposed on the coverage.

Breaking Down Registered Retirement Savings Plan Deduction Limit

In order to arrive at a taxpayer's contribution limit, the CRA calculates the taxpayer's maximum contribution earned for the year according to his or her annual income. It then deduct transfers of certain qualifying income made to the taxpayer's RRSP throughout the year. Finally, the CRA calculates for pension adjustments using past service pension adjustments and adds back pension adjustment reversals and carries forward any unused RRSP deductions that were not used in previous years. Deduction limits are shown on each Canadian taxpayer's personal Notice of Assessment.

Registered Retirement Savings Plan Deduction Limit: How to Find It

Canadian taxpayers can find their registered retirement savings plan (RRSP)/pooled registered savings plan (PRPP) deduction limit (often called their "contribution room") in the following ways:

Registered Retirement Savings Plan Deduction Limit: Claiming Deductions

Deduction may be entered on line 208 of the income tax and benefit return under the following guidelines provided by the CRA.

  • The amount of RRSP contributions that you can deduct for 2017 is based on your 2017 RRSP deduction limit, which appears on your latest notice of assessment or notice of reassessment, or on a T1028.
  • You can also deduct amounts for certain income you transfer to your RRSP. Your RRSP deduction limit is not reduced by these amounts. For more information on transfers, see Chapter 6 – Transfers to registered plans or funds and annuities.
  • Any income you earn in your RRSP is usually exempt from tax for the time the funds remain in the plan. However, you cannot claim a deduction for capital losses within your RRSP.
  • You cannot claim a deduction for amounts you pay for administration services for an RRSP. Also, you cannot deduct brokerage fees charged to buy and dispose of securities within a trusteed RRSP.

Interest on money borrowed to contribute to an RRSP may not be deducted. There may be changes in RRSP deduction limits and what is deductible in any given year, so taxpayers should check the CRA regularly. For example, contributions to a spouse's or common law partner's RRSP or SPP have special deductibility rules, as do contributions made to a Home Buyer's Plan (HBP) and a Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP). In most cases, the CRA will inform a taxpayer of any changed in their RRSP deduction limit.