by Tony Copple
There are two types of taxes: those that are resented, and those that are really resented
- Margaret Atwood, Massey lecture on debt, broadcast 26 March 2009 on CBC Radio's "Ideas."
Most of us pay too much tax. More than even the government
requires. Which, in a highly taxed country like Canada is a LOT!
For the first time in 1999, many Canadians were able to file 1999 tax returns
over the Internet using Canada Revenue Agency's (CRA)'s
Netfile service. If you are eligible, you will receive an access
code and information with your tax return package. Use Netfile-approved
commercial tax prep software to complete your return, then
use Netfile to transmit it. Only straightforward returns can currently be
netfiled. I am now using U-File tax prep software and find it very good. Nothing to pay or download till you are ready to Netfile or print.
If you are self-employed and did not file by April 30, and owe taxes, you
will not be charged a late fee (5% of the total owed) if you file before
June 15. You will be charged interest on what you owed since April 30.
This concession also applies also to spouses of self employed taxpayers.
If you are a Federal Government employee, you have access to detailed information about
your rates of pay and at
One way to reduce personal taxation in Canada is to have your
own business "on the side". This allows you deduct expenses, which can
reduce taxation from your "day job". There are limits to how far you can
take this, and you should be aware of CRA's rules for
taxation of proprietorships and partnerships on the side, particularly in
their early years.
If you run a business, you would probably benefit from advice from an
accountant at the beginning of your fiscal year so as to know how to
structure your business to minimize tax.
If you have investments you may be effectively running a business even if you
don't realize it, and certainly may be able to reduce taxation. Get advice from
your financial planner. Haven't got a financial planner? Get one! That's the best advice!
If you are an employee, you may be perfectly competant to do your own tax
return, particularly if you use U-File (or similar) software. However, a
tax preparation service will probably
still save you more than it costs you, and give you the peace of mind of
knowing that you aren't missing anything.
Here are some helpful sources for accounting and tax preparation:
Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) in Ontario. What's taxable, and how much.
State pensions Service Canada - CPP, OAS
Guaranteed income supplement - GIS
The Freedom Initiative. Listen to David Van Noppen on Over my Head, broadcast on CKCU 14 April 2013
Canada Revenue Agency
CRA TIPS line: 800-267-6999, for finding out your RRSP room (line 208)
CRA telephone help lines: Employees: 800-959-8281; Self-employed: 800-959-5525.
Charities Directorate: 800-267-2384
www.cra-arc.gc.ca/myaccount/ Access to your tax information including TFSA room (total contributed) and RRSP room
CRA tax forms for individuals
Corporations Canada (Part of Industry Canada)
Enquiries: 1-866-333-5556, or 613-941-9042 in National Capital area
Corporations Canada on-Line Filing Centre
New Canada Not-for-profit Corporations Act
CRA guide to the NPO information return
Annual returns for Canadian Not-for-Profit corporations
Corporations Canada On-line Filing Centre, or use form 4022
Ontario Not-for-profit corporations - new regulations
Netfile lets you file your tax return over the internet.
Netfile telephone help line: 800-714-7257
Video tutorial on corporation tax returns
TaxTips.ca, including . . .
CPP and EI rates for employee and employer from 2004 > present
CRA Payroll Deductions online calculator
CRA Disability Tax Credit
The Charities File - CRA help for smaller charities
Business Window - for GST/HST questions and information (including charities) - 800-959-5525
Charities GST HST Rebate claiming ( - from CRA site)
Equifax - check your personal credit report
EI refunds - If you employ family members, you don't need to deduct EI premiums for them.
Sharing income - goal or dream?
$Cad vs $US trend chart and other currency trends.
Fuel consumption conversion
Disability Tax Credit
Registered Disability Savings Plan
Pay and benefits info for Federal Government employees
Studio Tax - Free Canadian tax returns. Works just fine for most individuals.
UFile tax returns on line. I have used this for many years.
UFile-T2 for corporations
KPMG Canada Tax On Line
Tax Calculators - Ernst & Young
Marginal tax rate and income tax calculators - Walter Harder
(replaced Quick Tax, HomeTax and Cantax)
Grifftax - preparation over the web.
Dr Tax - for professional tax prep firms
The Exchange - find ATMs - ATM network
Municipal Property Asessment Corporation, MPAC
Service Ontario - Renew your driver's licence
New simplified tax form
Tony's financial planning dream
Investment Executive - newspaper for financial planners
Are you an ex-pat British Pensioner? Join CABP - Canadian Association of British Pensioners
Charitable giving - general concepts