Which medical professionals can certify on a Disability Tax Credit Certificate (“Form T2201”), that an individual has a severe and prolonged impairment in physical or mental functions? Can a registered oral surgeon or other oral specialist, licensed to be so by a provincial body be considered to be a medical doctor in that province for the purpose of certifying on Form T2201 that an individual has an impairment in speaking and feeding. Is a psychiatrist an appropriate specialist for the purpose of certifying on Form T2201 that an individual has an impairment in mental functions? The Canada Revenue Agency was asked these questions recently.
Pursuant to Income Tax Act (“ITA”) regulations, a medical practitioner must certify on Form T2201 that an individual has a severe and prolonged impairment in physical or mental functions that meets certain requirements. Generally the medical practitioner certifying an individual’s impairment must be a medical doctor. As an exception to this general rule, the certification of impairments in speaking, feeding, and mental functions may also be provided by a speech-language pathologist, an occupational therapist, and a psychologist, respectively.
Additionally, the ITA provides that a reference to a medical doctor, occupational therapist, psychologist, speech-language pathologist, or other medical practitioner is a reference to a person authorized to practise as such, according to the laws of the jurisdiction in which the medical service is rendered. If a certificate is issued for an individual, the medical practitioner must be authorized to practise as such according to the laws of a province or of the jurisdiction in which the individual resides. These laws generally provide for the licensing or certification of the medical practitioner as well as the establishment of a governing body to regulate the profession.
In CRA’s view, the term “medical doctor” refers to a physician who is authorized to practise medicine according to the laws of the relevant jurisdiction. Generally dentists (as well as other dental specialists) do not appear to be authorized to practice medicine according to the laws of a province or of the jurisdiction in which the individuals reside therefore these specialists do not appear to be medical doctors.
In addition, for the purpose of the disability tax credit, dentists and dental specialists are not among the specific medical practitioners listed in the ITA and, therefore, they may not provide certification on Form T2201 for any type of impairment.
On the other hand, a psychiatrist appears to be authorized to practice medicine according to the laws of a province or of the jurisdiction in which the individual resides, therefore a psychiatrist is an appropriate specialist to provide certification on Form T2201 regarding an individual’s impairment in mental functions.
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