For Immediate Release
July 23, 2015
Think twice about splurging Universal Child Care Benefit, says financial expert
ABBOTSFORD, B.C. – If you have kids in B.C., you are about to see a boon to your bank account courtesy of the federal government. On July 20, the expanded universal child care benefit (UCCB) program payments were mailed out or deposited into accounts.
While the intention of the payments is to help families manage the costs of raising children, local financial expert David Yan cautions parents about spending the windfall instead of saving it.
Under the program enhancement instituted in the federal budget in April, families with children aged five and under will now receive $160 per child, an additional $60 per child per month. The program has also been expanded to include children aged 6 to 17, providing $60 per child in that age range, something that the old system did not do. Payments are retroactive to Jan. 1, 2015, which means parents could see a lot of extra cash in their pockets. They can expect $1,920 by the end of the year for children under age 6 and a one-time retroactive payment of $420 (from January to July) this week. For children aged 6 to 17, they will receive $720 for the year.
“Parents are under tremendous financial pressure right now and have lots of competing priorities for this extra money,” says Yan, vice-president of wealth management at First West Credit Union’s Envision Financial division.
“But, they should be aware this is a taxable benefit and to get the maximum benefit, parents should consider investing part or all of it into a registered savings product like the Registered Education Savings Plan.”
What’s more, the UCCB isn’t the only source of free money the government is offering parents. In addition to the UCCB, there is $500 available through the Canada Learning Bond, $1,200 as part of the B.C. Training and Education Savings Program, and up to $500 in yearly education savings grants that will provide parents various opportunities to add significant funds to their children’s RESPs.
“Parents would be remiss if they weren’t seriously looking at what’s available to them and their children,” Yan says. “With the various benefits, savings and incentive plans available, it can be confusing for parents to navigate, but that’s where your financial advisor can help.”
About Envision Financial
Envision Financial is a premier provider of banking, investment and insurance services for residents and businesses throughout the Fraser Valley, Lower Mainland and Kitimat regions. As a division of First West Credit Union, B.C.’s third-largest credit union with 53 branches and 40 insurance offices throughout the province, Envision Financial brings innovative products, an extensive branch network and local decision making to the banking experience. For more information on Envision Financial, visit www.envisionfinancial.ca.
Manager, Public Relations & Communications
First West Credit Union