Tax Season 2018: Refunds Won’t Flow Before End of February

Filing a tax return is the first, and often most important, financial transaction of the year for millions of Canadians. What’s different in 2018? For starters, the government is hanging on to early filers’ refunds longer than ever. With last year’s average tax refund clocking in at just over $1,735, that’s a big deposit that cash-strapped Canadians don’t have for their RRSP or TFSA deposit. The taxman won’t start accepting tax returns for electronic filing until February 26—two weeks later […]

Aboriginal Peoples: Tax Filing Considerations

Canada has 1,673,785 aboriginal people, representing 4.9 percent of the population. According to our census, this population has grown 42.5 percent in the period 2006-16 and the average age of the aboriginal people, at 32.1 years, is close to a decade younger than the rest of Canada. There are unique tax filing concerns for these Canadians, requiring specialized knowledge. Approximately 75 percent of aboriginal people have registered Indian status and 44 percent of these people live on reserves. That’s notable […]

Tax Tip: A New Tax Credit for Infirm Children

Last week we discussed a new Canada Caregiver’s Credit (CCC) for spouses and eligible dependants who can be claimed as “equivalent to spouse.” But did you know that you can now make a new claim if you are a caregiver of a dependent minor or adult child who is infirm? It’s possible under the revamped Canada Caregiver Credit. Quick recall: the Canada Caregiver Credit comes with two parts: A “Mini” CCC of $2,150, which must be claimed for an infirm […]

US Tax Reforms Could Attract Top Canadian Talent

In its first major tax reform in over 30 years, the United States is considering a package of tax changes that if passed into law, could significantly impact Canada’s ability to keep top talent and business ventures from moving across the border. While Canadian high-income earners have faced various federal and provincial tax hikes since 2016, and private businesses are fighting this summer’s controversial high-tax  reforms, the federal tax proposals in the U.S. are much friendlier to several taxpayer profiles: […]

The Paradise Papers, Pre-Budget Consultations and The Real Tax Gap

This week brought more controversial tax news to Canadians: the Paradise Papers and a new tax “consultation”; this time in advance of the 2018 Federal budget. The elephant in the room in both these stories is the unfinished “consultation” on the massive tax changes proposed for private businesses. Small business owners are still reeling from the potentially exorbitant tax hikes on the incomes from their invested capital in private corporations within Canada, even as they hear about potential tax erosion […]

Which Employee Benefits Are Taxable?

A couple of weeks ago, the financial news of the day involved a controversy about the taxation of employee benefits. CRA was enforcing its interpretation of the law in relation to the taxation of the benefit of receiving employee discounts at work. After a political outcry, CRA backed down, leaving several question marks. That’s regrettable because tax law must be certain – up front – in order for employers to properly fill out T4 slips and communicate the net after-tax […]

Disability Tax Credits Change Highlights Audit-Proofing

Audit-proofing strategies must be implemented by tax professionals and their diabetic clients receiving disability tax credits in light of the CRA’s new interpretation of the rules. CRA has changed their position on allowing diabetics to claim disability tax credits in certain cases; a national news controversy that is leaving taxpayers uncertain about claims specific to important life sustaining therapies for their loved ones.  So exactly what are the rules and why is CRA changing their interpretation in retrospect? Criteria for […]

How To Grow Your Business Through Influential Leadership

No doubt about it: leadership is challenging these days. Whether you are raising a child, coaching someone else’s child, directing a team to reach a common goal, or leading your clients towards their financial goals and objectives, the skills you need to navigate change – a leader’s, primary role – are themselves changing. Your business and career growth, in fact, may depend on your ability to embrace new leadership requirements. Although often rewarding and challenging, leadership is rarely easy. It […]

Changes to Corporate Income-Splitting Rules Could Hurt Women and Families

Finance Canada’s controversial proposals on the taxation of private corporations, which require comments on the changes by October 2, will potentially affect business people of all income levels, from all walks of life, who serve and employ Canadians in their hometowns across Canada. However, they will also affect families and, in particular, women. According to the background information accompanying the proposals, entrepreneurship is alive and well in Canada. The number of incorporated self-employed individuals almost doubled between 2000 and 2016. […]

7 Factors for Classifying Your Side-Gig Income with the CRA

About 32 per cent of workers are starting their own businesses on the side for a variety of reasons — including 25 per cent of those who earn more than $75,000 and 19 per cent of those with income over $100,000. For tax purposes, it’s critical to know the difference between someone who is employed and someone who is considered self-employed. The research conducted in the U.S. by CareerBuilder.com also confirms that self-employment is embraced more frequently by women and […]