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How do I enter the volunteer search and rescue amount?

Brent Tipple

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Hello Brent Tipple,

You may have received a payment in 2022
from a government, a municipality, or another public authority for your work as:

a) A volunteer firefighter, or
b) A search and rescue volunteer, or other type of emergency worker, or a volunteer ambulance technician.

The T4 slip you received will indicate in Box 14 the taxable part of the payment, which is the part that is more than $1,000, while the tax-exempt allowance will be entered in Box 87 of the T4 slip.

Be careful, if you received a T4 slip from several emergency services and if you are claiming the volunteers' exemption, the total amount of box 87 of the T4 slip will be added to line 10100 of the federal return. 

Note: As a volunteer firefighter or a search and rescue volunteer, you may be entitled to an exemption of income of up to $1,000. However, if you choose to claim this exemption, you will not be eligible to the volunteer firefighters' amount or the search and rescue volunteers' amount. This exemption is identified in Box 87 of the T4 slip. 

Note: You have completed at least 200 hours of eligible services either as a volunteer firefighter or as a search and rescue volunteer during the taxation year.

If you were a volunteer firefighter or a search and rescue volunteer, you cannot claim both amounts.

For more information about this credit, please refer to the CRA guide via the following link:


To claim this non-refundable credit (line 31220 or line 31240 of the federal return), please follow the steps below:

1. On the "Left-side menu of the Interview tab", select "T4 and employment income".

2. On the screen to your right, go to the second group, "Other" and choose "Volunteer firefighters' amount and search and rescue volunteer amount" option and click the plus sign "+" on your right.

3. On the page that appears, go to the line "Select the type of emergency services volunteers" and in the drop-down menu to your right, choose the option that suit for you.

4. On the line "Indicate how you wish to handle the federal firefighter's amount and search and rescue volunteer's amount." select the applicable option from the drop-down menu. The program will indicate implicitly "Let MaxBack decide" by default and perform the required calculations to minimize the amount of tax payable.

5. Also, you can "Claim the amount" and the amount will be carried over to line 10100 of the federal return

6. However, if you choose the option "Do not claim the volunteer firefighters' amount" from the drop-down menu, the program will not increase your income with the amount of the exemption in Box 87 of the T4 slip and will not grant the credit to either line 31220 or 31240 of the federal return.  

7. Remember to enter all the information from your T4 slip that you have received for the emergency services you have provided, mainly box 87. 

You will find box 87 of the T4 slip at the bottom of the page under the line 'Other INFORMATION (click the triangle to expand the list of choices). "

The credit for Volunteer firefighters' amount (VFA) will be entered on line 31220 of your federal tax return. 

The credit for Search and rescue volunteers' amount (SRVA) will be entered on line 31240 of your federal tax return.


For residents of Quebec, the credit will be carried over line 390.

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