Filing Taxes Makes You Eligible for Rebates!
Are you leaving money on the table?
For low-income Canadians there are a number of reasons to file your tax return. There are a number of rebate programs that you can only access by filing your taxes. For instance, the GST rebate sends 4 cheques a year to help with the cost of living. You can’t get the quarterly cheques if you don’t file your taxes!
Book an appointment at The Compass (call (905) 274-9309) for help filing your taxes. Even if you are behind in filing your taxes, you can file for this year and take advantage of the rebates!
Some of the rebates available to low-income Canadians are:
- GST rebate. Last year the Federal Government doubled up on two quarterly payments!
- The new ‘grocery rebate’ is worth $467 for a couple, $234 for a single person and $225 for a senior. But you have to file to get it.
- In Ontario, The Climate Action Incentive is paid quarterly.
Are you taking advantage of ?:
- The Disability Tax credit,
- The Canadian Caregiver credit – Do you support a spouse or common-lawpartner, or a dependant with a physical or mental impairment? The Canada caregiver credit (CCC) is a non-refundable tax credit that may be available to you.
- Public Transit Tax Credit for Seniors
- Registered Education Savings Plan – The Government adds money to the RESP through a Government grant. (Canada Education Savings Grant) for low income Canadians. You don’t even have to put money in!
- The Registered Disability Savings Plan – If your net income is less than or equal to $34,863 per year, the federal government will put $1,000 into your RDSP each year. If you are younger than 18, then it is your family income that counts. If your net income is between, $34,863 and $53,359, the government will put a portion of $1,000 into your account.
Our tax preparers at The Compass are encouraged to see the government looking to expand their existing service:
Budget 2023 announces that, starting next year, the CRA will pilot a new automatic filing service that will help vulnerable Canadians, who currently do not file their taxes, receive the benefits to which they are entitled. Following consultations with stakeholders and community organizations, the CRA will present a plan in 2024 to expand this service even further.
Automatic Tax Filing
Up to 12 per cent of Canadians currently do not file their tax returns—the majority of whom are low-income, and would pay little to no income tax. In fact, many of these low-income Canadians are missing out on valuable benefits and support to which they are entitled, such as the Canada Child Benefit and the Guaranteed Income Supplement.
Since 2018, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has delivered a free and simple File My Return service, which allows eligible Canadians to auto-file their tax return over the phone after answering a series of short questions. Canadians with simple tax situations and lower or fixed income receive an invitation letter from the CRA to use File My Return, and in the 2022 tax filing season, approximately 53,000 returns were filed using this service.
To ensure more low-income Canadians have the ability to quickly and easily auto-file their tax returns, Budget 2023 announces that the federal government will increase the number of eligible Canadians for File My Return to two million by 2025—almost triple the current number. The government will report on its progress in 2024.
By Margaret Ramsay, Guest Contributor