Things to Remember This Tax Season
1. File your income tax and benefit return
It’s important to file your return on time so that you can get any benefits and credits you may be eligible for! The CRA uses the information from your return to calculate your benefits and credits.
You should file your return on time every year, even if you don’t owe tax on your income or if you had no income at all. If you have a spouse or common-law partner, they should also file an income tax and benefit return.
2. File your return online
If you chose to file electronically using NETFILE, you will be asked to enter an eight-character alphanumeric access code before filing. This unique code can be found on your Notice of Assessment (NOA) in the top right area of the first page.
3. Claim all your benefits, credits, and deductions
There are tax deductions, credits, and expenses you may be able to claim on your return. These include the Canada child benefit, the goods and services tax / harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit, and other related provincial or territorial benefits. Benefits and credits can provide payments to help you throughout the year, so you have more money in your pocket!
You may be able to claim:
· non-refundable tax credits for your medical expenses
· deduction for child care expenses
4. Enter all your income and COVID-19 benefit payment amounts
You should get your T4 slips from your employer by the end of February. You may also get slips from other payers, such as pension providers and financial institutions.
If you received the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB), Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB), Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), or Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) payments, these are considered taxable income, and you will have to enter on your return the total of the amounts you received.
Some income you earn may not be included on a tax slip. You should report other types of income such as:
Tips earned at your place of work
Money earned through the platform economy
Income from sales of goods or services (e.g., side jobs)
Sharing economy – Leveraging personal assets to earn revenue (e.g., Airbnb, DoorDash)
Gig economy – Short-term or short contract-based work (e.g., Clickworker, Crowdsource, Fiverr)
Peer-to-Peer (P2P) – Selling of goods and services from one person directly to another, either through a retail or wholesale platform (e.g., Etsy, eBay, Craigslist)
Social media influencers – Income earned through the use of social media platforms via advertisement revenue, subscriptions, product placement, product promotion, “gifts”/”donations”. (e.g., YouTube, Instagram, Twitch)
5. Make the right claims
Make sure you know what you can and can’t claim. Sometimes people mistakenly claim costs that are not eligible for tax deductions. If the CRA finds a mistake, we will adjust your return.
Common adjustments are made for things such as:
loans to family members
reimbursed medical expenses (such as prescription drug claims)
6. Simplify your life with My Account
My Account helps you easily manage your taxes from the comfort of your home. Register for My Account to easily:
view and update your personal information
see what you owe to the CRA
view your limits for a tax-free savings account or registered retirement savings plan
view the status of your return
7. File and pay on time
If you have a balance owing, paying it in full by the deadline will ensure interest is not charged. If you cannot pay in full, file your return by the deadline to avoid late-filing penalties. If you file your return by the deadline, you may be able to make a payment arrangement. This lets you make smaller payments over time for the debt and interest until you’ve paid the entire amount.
8. Keep receipts and documents
You should keep all your receipts and documents for at least six years starting from the end of the last taxation year to which they relate.
Need assistance or have a tax related question? Click here and contact a member of our Tax division.