Question of the Week – What are the age limitations on RRSPs and TFSAs?

We had a question come in recently asking about age limitations on RRSP and TFSA accounts. More specifically the question asked if an 18-year-old son could open their own RRSP or TFSA account at their bank. The short answer to that question is, it depends.

Let’s look at each type of account and what age limitations they have starting with TFSAs. For those who missed our previous posts on TFSAs, it stands for Tax-Free Savings Account.

In some provinces and territories, you must be 18 to open a TFSA. However, in Nova Scotia you need to be the age of majority (19 years old) to legally enter a contract. Because of this you must be 19 years old to open a TFSA.

For RRSP accounts there is no set age which someone needs to be to open as account, but as with a TFSA the age of majority matters in Nova Scotia. So, depending on the type of account, you may need to be 19 years old in Nova Scotia. A 19-year-old should be able to open an RRSP account as a simple bank account, but they may not be able to open an investment or brokerage account due to some trading rules. Be sure to check with the financial institution you are dealing with to see what their policies and regulations are.

You should consult with a person qualified to provide income tax advice if you have any questions about how a TFSA or RRSP works.