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Federal and provincial governments offer various benefits, usually in the form of financial aid, to support people with housing, old age, education and training, family needs, and medical and disability needs. Many of these benefits are directed toward families with low incomes. An example of this is the Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB), which financially helps low-income Albertans with the costs of raising a family.

Check out these other tax benefits and deductions for parents

What is The Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB)?

The Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB) is a program that gives lower- and middle-income families with children under 18 financial assistance. The ACFB is a relatively new program that consolidates two programs into one: the Alberta Child Benefit (ACB) and the Alberta Family Employment Tax Credit (AFETC). This new consolidated program began in July 2020. The two programs were consolidated to streamline administration and maximize benefits for low-income Albertans. 

Do you have a disability? Then you may qualify for the tax disability credit

How Does The ACFB Work? 

The amount of money you’re eligible for under the ACFB program depends on your family’s income level, and on how many children under 18 you have. The program has two components:

Base component: available for low-income families with children that either have or don’t have employment income

Working component: available for families with an income over $2,760, and increases at a rate of 15% for every additional dollar earned over that amount. This is meant to encourage families to continue working. 

Are You Eligible For The Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB)?

Albertans wishing to apply for the ACFB must:

  • Have one or more children under 18
  • Reside in Alberta
  • File a tax return
  • Meet income criteria

Additionally, Albertans who receive support from other programs such as the Assured Income for The Severely Handicapped (AISH), Income Support, or Alberta Child Care Subsidy, are still eligible to receive the ACFB. 

How Much Can You Get Through The ACFB?

For families under the base component, the benefit amount is reduced if household income exceeds $24,467. For families under the working component, the benefit amount reduces once household income exceeds $41,000.

Find out which tax bracket you fall into

Your maximum amount depends on the number of children you have, and which component of the program you fall under:

Number of ChildrenBase Component Maximum AmountWorking Component Maximum Amount

Use this child and family benefits calculator to find out how much of the benefit you qualify for.

What Happens if The CRA Reassesses Your Eligibility and Qualifies You For a Lower Payment?

Your eligibility and payment qualification might change if your household scenario changes. For example, you might be eligible for a greater benefit if you have more children, or if your family moves to Alberta. You might be eligible for a reduced benefit if your family leaves Alberta. 

Find out how to open a CRA My Account.

If you qualify for a greater benefit, the CRA will pay you the difference with an additional payment. 

If you qualify for a smaller benefit, the CRA will send you a letter indicating your obligation to pay back any amount received over your year’s entitlement. Contact the CRA at 1-800-959-2809 for more information on how to return any owed benefit amounts.

Here’s what you can do if you owe money to the CRA.

Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB) Payment Dates 2023

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) pays eligible ACFB recipients on the Government of Alberta’s behalf. The CRA will either mail or directly deposit ACFB payments into recipients’ bank (potentially under the name FPT Canada) accounts in 4 instalments. Payments are made in August, November, February, and May.

Additionally, recipients who are eligible for any amounts under $10 in a quarter might have payments consolidated and paid less frequently. 

Are you on the Canada Pension Plan? Check out the CPP payments dates.

How do You Apply For the ACFB?

Albertans are automatically considered for the ACFB when they file their annual tax returns. If you qualify for the federal government’s Canada Child Benefit, you automatically qualify for the ACFB. 

Final Thoughts

The Alberta Child and Family Benefit (ACFB) is a great resource to help lower-income Albertans manage their day-to-day family expenses. The program also offers financial incentives to start or continue working. 

Chrissy Kapralos avatar on Loans Canada
Chrissy Kapralos

Chrissy is a Toronto-based communications advisor. With an English degree from the University of Toronto and editing courses under her belt from Ryerson University, she has continued her lifelong passion for writing and editing. In addition to working for Loans Canada on a variety of financial topics, Chrissy has a few years of resume writing and editing under her belt, and takes great pleasure in helping people find work that fits with their experience and passions. When she isn't working, you can find her practicing yoga, hanging out with her dog, reading up on financial and real estate news, or planning her next trip abroad.

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