News from the Canada Revenue Agency

published 3/26/2021

Why you would send the CERB back?

You must repay the CERB if you no longer meet the eligibility requirements for any 4-week period you received it. Your situation may have changed since you first applied, or you may have made an honest mistake when applying. This could happen if:

  • You applied for the CERB but later realize you’re not eligible.
  • You applied for and got a CERB payment from both the CRA and EI/Service Canada for the same eligibility period.
  • You receive social assistance benefits and realize the CERB will affect your other benefits.
  • You applied for the CERB twice in one period.
  • You earned more employment or self-employment income than expected in the period(s) you applied for.

Still not sure if you need to repay the CERB?

Go to return or repay a payment or call 1-833-966-2099.

Before you repay the CERB

Make sure you know which department you got your CERB from.

  • If you got the CERB from the CRA, you must repay it to the CRA.
  • If you got the CERB from Service Canada (EI), you must repay it to Service Canada.

Not sure whether you got your CERB payment from the CRA or Service Canada?

Go to return or repay a payment or call 1-833-966-2099.

How to repay the CERB to the CRA

To repay the CERB to the CRA, choose one of the following options:

  • Online: using CRA My Account
  • Online banking: with your financial institution
  • By mail: mail a cheque (new or the original if you have it) or money order to the CRA.
    Do not send cash through the mail.

    If you are sending a new cheque or money order:
    • Make payment out to “Receiver General for Canada”
    • Indicate it is for “Repayment of CERB”
    • Include your Social Insurance Number (SIN)

For more information go to return or repay a payment.

Mailing Address

Revenue Processing – Repayment of CERB
Sudbury Tax Centre
1050 Notre Dame Ave.
Sudbury ON P3A 0C3

How to repay the CERB to Service Canada

To repay the CERB to Service Canada, choose one of the following options:

  • Online banking: with your financial institution
  • In person: at your financial institution
  • By mail: mail a cheque or money order to Service Canada
    Do not send cash through the mail

    If you are sending a new cheque or money order:
    • Make your payment out to: “Receiver General for Canada.”
    • Write your SIN on the front of your cheque or money order.
    • Indicate it is for “Repayment of CERB.”

For more information go to return or repay a payment.

Mailing Address

ESDC Remittances
PO Box 1122
Matane QC

Impact on your taxes

The CERB is taxable and you will need to report any payments you received on your 2020 income tax return. This means you may need to pay taxes on the CERB you received since no tax was deducted when you received the CERB. Most individuals should have already received a T4A tax slip with the amount of CERB they received for the 2020 tax year. CERB payments, including any CERB payments not repaid before December 31, 2020, must be declared on a taxpayer’s tax return.

If you received a T4A slip that does not accurately reflect the payments you received, contact the CRA by phone. For more information, visit T4A: Report COVID-19 amounts.

published: 02/04/2021

This year, the COVID-19 pandemic may have affected the tax-filing situations of your clients. It may also affect the way you usually interact with them to file their income tax and benefit returns. Over 30 million returns were filed last season, and over 17 million were electronically filed by tax preparers and tax professionals. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) wants to help you make sure your clients are prepared to file their returns this year.

Planning ahead this tax-filing season

If your clients choose to file a paper return, the COVID-19 pandemic may affect their ability to file a return, slow down their assessment, or affect their ability to receive their refund, benefit or credit payments. This year, it is important for your clients to file their returns electronically and as soon as possible, because they may be entitled to a refund, benefits, or credits. Online filing opens on February 22, 2021.  If your clients do submit a paper return, it may take 10-12 weeks for the CRA to issue them their assessment due to on-site processing limitations in tax centres.

Your clients should receive most of their slips and receipts by the end of February. If they don’t receive their slips, they may be able to get them through My Account. As you are no doubt aware, tax slips and other tax-related information are also available in Auto-fill my return, a secure service in certified tax software.

If you or your clients want to learn more, the CRA’s Get Ready page has information about online filing, deadlines, and other helpful links.

Signing up for direct deposit

Your clients now have more options to sign up for direct deposit because more financial institutions began to offer CRA direct deposit through their websites as of April 2020. As of November 2020, more than 3 million individuals have enrolled for direct deposit through their financial institution.

Please make sure your clients are aware of this information and encourage them to sign up so they can get their refunds faster and avoid delays.

Filing for recipients of COVID-19 emergency benefits

The CRA and Service Canada processed more than 27 million Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) applications, totaling more than $81 billion in payments to Canadians. The CRA also processed more than 2 million Canada Emergency Student Benefit (CESB) applications that totaled more than $2 billion in payments.

If your clients received CERB, CESB, Canada Recovery Benefit (CRB), Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit (CRSB), or Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit (CRCB) payments, you need to include the total amount they received on their return. For any such payments, they will receive a T4A (for benefits issued by the CRA) and/or a T4E (for benefits issued by Service Canada) tax slip in the mail with the information they need to enter on their return. The slips can also be viewed online in My Account and Represent a Client as of February 8, 2021. Residents of Quebec will receive both a T4A and RL-1 slip from the CRA, however, the RL-1 slip will not be available for viewing in My Account.

The CRA recognizes that receiving these slips might generate questions for Canadians. Those who believe they received a T4A or a RL-1 by mistake or believe there may be discrepancy with the information provided on these slips should contact the CRA.

The CRA wants to add that some provinces or territories may have sent out pandemic related payments that are considered taxable income. These amounts should be included on your client’s tax return.

If your clients received the CERB or CESB, no tax was withheld when payments were issued. If your clients received the CRB, CRSB, or CRCB, 10% tax was withheld at source. For Quebec residents who received the CRB, CRSB, and CRCB, 5% of the tax withheld will be reported on the T4A slip and the other 5% will be reported on the RL-1 slip.

Keep in mind that these benefits are taxable and that your clients may owe no tax, owe tax, or be entitled to a refund when filing their return depending on how much income they earned from all sources, and deductions and credits they are entitled to claim in 2020.

If you have clients whose income is normally exempt from tax, their COVID-19 benefits may also be exempt from tax. If they received CRB, CRSB or CRCB payments in 2020, they can claim a refund of the 10% (5% for Quebec residents) tax that was withheld on these payment by filing a 2020 tax return.

Your clients may have other impacts filing their return that are specific to the COVID-19 emergency benefit payments, or if they are a resident of Quebec.

Repaying COVID-19 emergency benefits

The Government of Canada acknowledges that communications on this topic were unclear in the first days after the CERB was launched. We regret that this lack of consistent clarity led some self-employed individuals to mistakenly apply to the CERB despite being ineligible. 

We know that the vast majority of Canadians are honest and forthright, especially when it comes to their tax affairs. In order to account for errors made in good faith, the Government has indicated from the outset that there would be no penalties or interest in cases where CERB needs to be repaid. However, we recognize that, for some individuals, repaying the CERB could present a significant financial hardship. For this reason, we will give Canadians more time and flexibility to repay based on their ability to pay. We will work with impacted individuals on a case-by-case basis.

If your client mistakenly received COVID-19 emergency benefit payments, or their situation has changed since they first applied for one these benefits, they can repay the CRA via My Account, online banking, or mail.

Payment arrangement parameters have been expanded to give Canadians more time and flexibility to repay based on their ability to pay. Individuals who cannot make a payment in full are advised to contact the CRA to make a payment arrangement.

Do not risk having benefits interrupted

Doing taxes on time is the best way to ensure your clients are entitled to benefit and credit payments, like the Canada child benefit (CCB), the Old Age Security (OAS) pension payments, and the goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit, are not interrupted. Even if your clients owe tax, they should not risk having their benefits interrupted by not filing. If they cannot pay their balance owing, the CRA can work with your clients on a payment arrangement.

Protection from scams and fraud

We recognize that there is a significant effects on victims of scams, fraud, and identity theft, and we are doing our best to protect Canadians and ensure they receive the benefits to which they are entitled.

It is important for your clients to protect themselves from scams, and to know when and how the CRA might contact them. The Slam the scam webpage provides information about how people can protect themselves from fraud and understand the ways in which the CRA will be in touch.

As a fraud prevention measure, we encourage them to sign up for email notifications from the CRA to receive a notification when they have new mail to view in My Account and when important personal information, such as their address or direct deposit information is changed on CRA records. They can register to receive email notifications in My Account or the MyCRA or MyBenefits CRA web apps.

What’s new for 2021

Filing during the COVID-19 pandemic may be difficult for Canadians. To help you answer questions from your clients, check out our questions and answers page. It includes answers about the tax-filing process, credits and benefits available, and how COVID-19 might affect taxes. Highlights of what’s new include:

Additional call agents to further increase call centre capacity – Throughout COVID-19, the CRA has seen a significant increase in call volumes. To help manage this, the 2020 Fall Economic Statement allocated additional funding to the CRA for call centre operations.

Using this investment, we’ve hired additional agents who will help with increased call volumes. We have also contracted a third-party service provider to assist with client service capacity issues. These agents will be able to answer general enquiries about emergency benefits, but they will not have access to taxpayers’ personal information.

New automated callback service – This new service lets callers ask for a call-back instead of waiting on hold. Callers on the individual tax enquiries, benefits enquiries, and business enquiries lines may be given the option of a callback when wait times reach a certain length. The new automated callback service is easy to use, secure, and helps save callers time on the phone.

Extended call centre hours – Leading up to and throughout tax-filing season, our Individual enquiries line is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 9pm local time, and our extended Saturday hours will be 9am to 5pm as of February 27th.

Immediate Support for Families with Young Children – In the Fall Economic Statement, the Government announced support for families with young children for 2021. To provide immediate support for families with young children, the Government proposes to provide, in 2021, four tax-free payments of $300 per child under the age of six to families entitled to the Canada child benefit (CCB) with family net income equal to or less than $120,000, and $150 per child under the age of six to families entitled to the CCB with family net income above $120,000. Individuals who are entitled to receive a CCB payment in January, April, July and October, will receive these payments for children under the age of six. The first two payments would be based on the family’s net income in 2019 while the last two payments will be based on the family’s net income in 2020. Parents must file their tax returns for these years to receive all four payments.

Home office expenses – If you have clients who worked more than 50% of the time from home for a period of at least four consecutive weeks in 2020, they may be eligible to claim a deduction for home office expenses in the 2020 tax year.

Multi-factor authentication – We’ve introduced a second layer of authentication that gives CRA login services users more security and ensures only they can login to their account. After enrolling, users will need to enter a passcode that is sent to them via text or voice message each time they access their online CRA account.

Canada training credit – If you were at least 26 and less than 66 years old at the end of 2020 and you have a Canada training credit limit for 2020 on your latest notice of assessment or reassessment for 2019, you may be eligible to claim this refundable tax credit for up to half of your eligible tuition and other fees paid to an eligible educational institution in Canada for courses you took in 2020, or fees you paid to certain bodies for an occupational, trade or professional examination taken in 2020.

Digital news subscription tax credit – For the 2020 to 2024 tax years, your clients may be able to claim a non-refundable tax credit if they paid for a qualifying digital news subscription with a qualified Canadian journalism organization.

Canadian journalism labour tax credit – For 2019 and later tax years, if your client is a qualifying member of a partnership, they may be able to claim this new, refundable credit. The partnership must be a qualifying journalism organization and must allocate the credit to your client.

Trust accounts registration online – The CRA is developing a new registration service that will allow most trusts to apply for a trust account number online. The new service is expected to be available in February 2021, and will be available through My Account, My Business Account, and Represent a Client.

Removal of drop boxes – Due to COVID-19, drop boxes have been removed at CRA offices except the Sudbury, Winnipeg, and Jonquiere Tax Centres. If you need to mail your clients’ tax return, please send it to their nearest tax centre.    

Contacts

Media Relations
Canada Revenue Agency
613-948-8366
cra-arc.media@cra-arc.gc.ca

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published: 01/12/2021

Every tax season, community organizations partner with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and Revenu Québec to offer free tax clinics. This is made possible through the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program (CVITP). In Quebec, this program is called the Income Tax Assistance – Volunteer Program.

Currently, community organizations that run tax clinics must cover the cost of these events. The CRA knows that these costs can be a challenge for participating organizations and that they may be a barrier for encouraging others to sign up.

To offer more support to community organizations and to encourage others to sign up, the CRA is piloting a new grant program for the upcoming tax season. The grant program will help organizations offset some of these costs and provide funding for returns filed so they can focus on what they do best – helping people in need.

The CRA will be investing more than 10 million over three years toward the new grant program. Organizations will be able to submit grant applications starting in May 2021.

You can find more information about the grant program, including eligibility criteria, at canada.ca/free-tax-clinics-grant.

If you’re interested in running a free tax clinic in 2021, visit Host a free tax clinic. With more organizations offering the service, more Canadians will have the support they need to get their taxes done cost- and stress-free, and receive their benefits and credits.

Stay connected

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published: 12/15/2020

This year has been filled with unprecedented challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Many Canadians unexpectedly had to work from home which resulted in millions of Canadians setting up their work space in their kitchens, bedrooms and living rooms.

In response, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, provided today additional details on how the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has made the home office expenses deduction available to more Canadians, and simplified the way employees can claim these expenses on their personal income tax return for the 2020 tax year. Employees with larger claims for home office expenses can still choose to use the existing detailed method to calculate their home office expenses deduction.

Employees who worked from home more than 50% of the time over a period of a least four consecutive weeks in 2020 due to COVID-19 will now be eligible to claim the home office expenses deduction for 2020. The use of a shorter qualifying period will ensure that more employees can claim the deduction than would otherwise have been possible under longstanding practice.

A new temporary flat rate method will allow eligible employees to claim a deduction of $2 for each day they worked at home in that period, plus any other days they worked from home in 2020 due to COVID-19 up to a maximum of $400. Under this new method, employees will not have to get Form T2200 or Form T2200S completed and signed by their employer.

To simplify the process for employees choosing the detailed method, the CRA launched today simplified forms (Form T2200S and Form T777S) and a calculator designed specifically to assist with the calculation of eligible home office expenses.

For more information on working from home expenses go to Canada.ca/cra-home-workspace-expenses.

Quick Facts

  • Home office expenses can be claimed as a deduction on an employee’s personal income tax return. Deductions reduce the amount of income they pay tax on.
  • For those using the detailed method to calculate their home office expenses, the CRA has expanded the list of eligible expenses that can be claimed to include home internet access fees. A comprehensive list of all eligible expenses is available online.
  • According to Statistics Canada, “Working from home continues to be an important adaptation to COVID-19 health risks, with 2.4 million Canadians who do not normally work from home doing so in October.
  • The CRA engaged many stakeholders in the fall of 2020 about the simplified Form T2200 and work-space-in-the-home expenses prior to introducing these temporary measures. For more information, go to the Backgrounder – Consultation on the simplification of Form T2200.
  • The new temporary flat rate method to calculate the deduction for home office expenses was announced on November 30th in the Fall Economic Statement.

Associated Links

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published: 12/8/2020

Submitting legal documents related to T1 in Represent a Client

As of October 19, 2020, our online Represent a Client (RAC) service allows you to submit legal documents, such as a will or a power of attorney, to identify you as a legal representative.

This means you don’t have to mail or fax us documents, saving you time and postage.

Changes to authorization validation for representatives over the telephone

The CRA has a legal obligation to protect confidential taxpayer information. Therefore, we can provide confidential information only to the taxpayer or individuals the taxpayer has authorized.

To share confidential taxpayer information with you over the phone, the CRA needs to be able to validate that you are authorized on the taxpayer’s account.

As of January 2021, if you are a representative associated with a firm, a business or a group, you must have your own RepID and provide it to the CRA before you can represent your client. This will significantly enhance the security of confidential taxpayer information by allowing our agents to verify that you are authorized on the taxpayer’s account.

The taxpayer does not have to sign and submit a new authorization request for this change. The administrator within RAC for the business number (BN) or GroupID with administrative rights on the business number (BN) or the GroupID can associate your new RepID to the BN or GroupID.

You can register for your RepID in advance at canada.ca/taxes-representatives.

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published: 8/1/2020

The Dedicated Telephone Service (DTS) is now a permanent CRA program available nationally.

By using the service, income tax service providers can connect with experienced CRA officers from the Income Tax Rulings Directorate who will be able to help them interpret the provisions of the Income Tax Act. After determining the nature of the tax issue, these officers will carefully consider the question and then send the service provider helpful information and guidance.

While these officers do not have access to individual taxpayers’ accounts, the DTS is a valuable technical resource to help service providers resolve their interpretive tax issues.

To register, small- and medium-sized income tax service providers – those with 50 or fewer partners – are invited to fill out and send the completed DTS registration form to dts-str@cra-arc.gc.ca. You can also visit the DTS web page for further information about the service, including eligibility criteria and more details on how the service can help.

published: 4/30/2020

We recognize the vital role that the Scientific Research and Experimental Development (SR&ED) Program plays in supporting Canadian businesses. We are doing everything we can to ensure that businesses receive their credits as soon as possible during these difficult times, and that innovation and creativity are fully supported when they are most needed.

The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)’s Business Continuity Plan has been adjusted to include priority activities that support the economic well-being of Canadians. This includes programs like SR&ED.

Here are some measure the CRA is implementing:

  • Most refundable claims will be processed as soon as possible with minimal burden on the claimants, injecting funding into businesses that need it now to help manage the adverse financial implications of the pandemic. Claims accepted at this time may be subject to review/audit at a future date to ensure eligibility.
  • The CRA is prioritizing objections inventory related to critical programs, including SR&ED claims.
  • We will generally not contact small or medium businesses to initiate any SR&ED claim reviews. This pause is reflective of the CRA’s efforts to mitigate health risks and minimize the burden on businesses, while concentrating on prioritizing the delivery of benefits to Canadians during this challenging time.
  • Any taxpayer under audit who wishes or needs their SR&ED claim review to proceed may work with their auditor remotely by telephone and through My Business Account to advance the file as much as possible under the current circumstances.
  • If you have questions about the status of your SR&ED claim, we continue to be available to help and answer questions; please contact the SR&ED Program in the tax services office that serves your area. For contact information, go to canada.ca/taxes-sred.
  • Should you have questions on other topics such as filing and payment deadlines and proactive relief measures, the CRA’s liaison officers will be available exclusively by phone to provide the key information that small businesses and self-employed individuals need most urgently. Business owners and self-employed individuals can fill out the Liaison Officer Service request form to have a liaison officer contact them by phone.

published: 4/21/2020

To help employers keep and re-hire workers amidst the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Government is implementing the Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy (CEWS).  This important economic measure provides a 75% wage subsidy of up to $847 per employee per week, to eligible employers, for up to 12 weeks, preventing further job losses and encouraging employers to re-hire workers previously laid off as a result of COVID-19, retroactive to March 15, 2020.

The Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy calculator is available to support employers as they prepare to apply for the CEWS.

The CEWS calculator can be found on CRA’s Canada Emergency Wage Subsidy Web page. This Web page incorporates feedback received during user testing with stakeholders, including the Canadian Federation of Independent Business and the Chartered Professional Accountants of Canada.  It includes detailed information and instructions about who can apply for the subsidy, how eligibility is assessed, and how the subsidy is calculated.  The calculator also includes a printable statement feature that employers can use to view their claim at a glance and, as of April 27, enter required information into the CEWS application form quickly and easily.

By providing employers with additional details about their subsidy claim, the CEWS calculator can equip employers with important information they can use now to make more informed decisions about retaining and re-hiring workers. A series of information sessions will be held in the coming days to provide a forum for eligible employers.

The CRA also encourages employers to sign up for My Business Account or Represent a Client, as employers will be able to apply through these portals. The CRA will open the application process on April 27, 2020.  CEWS claims will be subject to verification by the CRA. Funds for approved applications will begin to be released on May 5.

published: 2/21/2020

New and enhanced services

Check CRA processing times – Want to find out quickly how long CRA will take to handle your request? Use the Check CRA Processing Times tool on canada.ca to get a targeted completion date. The new tool uses published service standards and information you select from drop-down menus to calculate targeted completion times for various programs.

Dedicated telephone service for tax service providers – CRA is offering this service to small and medium income tax service providers across Canada for the 2020 tax filing season. By using this service, income tax service providers can connect with experienced CRA officers who assist with complex tax questions.

Changes to the income tax and benefit return – CRA has made a couple of formatting changes. Line numbers that were three or four digits are now five digits (for example, line 150 on the return is now line 15000), and the former Schedule 1 is now part of the return.

Representative authorizations – A new e-authorization process for online access to individual tax accounts was introduced February 10, 2020. You will be able to request access to individual tax accounts using a web form through Represent a Client. The existing T1013 form will be discontinued for access to individual tax accounts. The T1013, RC59, and NR95 will be combined into one form called the AUT-0 Authorize a Representative for Access by Phone and Mail. This form will only be used to request offline access to individual and business tax accounts.

Changes to benefits, credits, deductions, and programs

Canada Pension Plan (CPP) enhancement – Employed individuals should report their base CPP/Quebec Pension Plan (QPP) contributions on T4 earnings as a non-refundable tax credit at line 30800 of the income tax return. For 2019 and subsequent tax years, the new deduction for the enhanced CPP contributions on T4 earnings will be allowed at new line 22215 on the income tax return.

Self-employed individuals should report half of the base amount of their CPP/QPP contributions on self-employed income at line 31000 (formerly line 310 for 2018 and prior tax years) as a non‑refundable tax credit. The other half of the base amount and the full amount of the enhanced CPP contributions on self-employed earnings will be allowed as a deduction at existing line 22200.

Canada training credit limit – Eligible workers of at least 25 years old and less than 65 years old at the end of 2019 and later years, and who meet certain conditions will accumulate $250 a year, up to a lifetime limit of $5,000 to be used in calculating their Canada Training Credit, a new refundable tax credit available for 2020 and future years.

Based on the information on their return, the CRA will determine their Canada training credit limit for the 2020 tax year and provide it to them on their notice of assessment for 2019 and will be available in My Account.

For 2020 and future years, an individual may be able to claim a Canada Training Credit equal to their Canada Training Credit Limit for the year or 50% of their eligible tuition and fees paid to an educational Institution in Canada, whichever is less.

Canada workers benefit – The Canada workers benefit, formerly the working income tax benefit, is a refundable tax credit available to eligible individuals and families who work, but earn low income. As of February 2020, a simplified version of the advance payments application will be available in My Account.

Climate action incentive payment – The federal fuel charge will no longer apply in New Brunswick as of April 2020. This means that residents of New Brunswick will no longer receive the climate action incentive payment when they file their income tax returns.

Eligible individuals who are residents of Alberta may now claim the climate action incentive payment. The climate action incentive payment may still be claimed by eligible individuals who are residents of Saskatchewan, Manitoba, or Ontario.

A 10% supplement is available to eligible individuals in these provinces who are residents of small or rural communities. The climate action incentive payment is first used to reduce any balance owing, and then it may create or increase a refund.

Withdrawals have increased under the Home Buyers’ Plan – The maximum amount that can be withdrawn from a registered retirement savings plan under the Home Buyers’ Plan increased from $25,000 to $35,000, for withdrawals made after March 19, 2019.

Cannabis as a medical expense – Certain cannabis products bought for a patient for medical purposes are eligible for the medical expense tax credit.

The patient must:

  • be a holder of a medical document as defined in the Cannabis Regulations
  • be registered as a client of the holder of a licence for sale; and
  • make their purchases from the holder of a licence for sale they are registered with.

Tuition and enrolment certificate – The new T2202, Tuition and Enrolment Certificate replaces T2202A, Tuition and Enrolment Certificate for the 2019 and following tax years. Flying schools and clubs will now report information on the new T2202.

Kinship care providers – For 2009 and later years, for the Canada workers benefit and the former working income tax benefit, a care provider may be considered to be the parent of a child in their care, regardless of whether they receive financial assistance from a government under a kinship care program. As a result, the care provider may be entitled to claim the child as an eligible dependent for purposes of claiming the benefit.

Also, for these years, financial assistance payments received by care providers under a kinship care program are not included in income and not included when determining entitlement to benefits and credits based on income.

Communal organizations – For 2014 and later tax years, business income earned by the trust that is allocated to a member of the communal organization is deemed to be income from a business carried on by that member. This may allow members of a communal organization to claim the Canada workers benefit for 2019 and later years and the working income tax benefit for the 2014 to 2018 tax years.

published: 1/6/2020

The Canada Revenue Agency is introducing new digital processes in February 2020 to simplify the way practitioners request online authorizations.

Changes include:

  • A new e-authorization process for online access to individual tax accounts. As a representative, you’ll be able to request access using a web form through Represent a Client. Similar to the authorization process for business tax accounts, you will need to scan and submit a signature page that has been signed by the individual.
     
  • The existing T1013 form for access to individual tax accounts will be discontinued. The T1013, RC59, and NR95 will be combined into one form called the AUT-01 Authorize a Representative for Access by Phone and Mail. This form will only be used to request offline access to individual and business tax accounts.

    Do not submit the AUT-01 form if you have an existing authorization for online access. All AUT-01 submitted to the CRA will be processed as new requests and will override previous T1013 submissions. This means representatives will lose their online access if they submit an AUT-01 form (with the exception of non‑residents, as there are no online services for non-residents).
     
  • If you use T1 or T2 software, instead of Represent a Client, to e-submit a request for online access to individual and business tax accounts, a new signature page will be generated. This new page must be signed by the client and retained by the representative for six years.

    There is no requirement to submit a copy of this signature page, unless requested by the CRA.
     
  • Removal of some restrictions for e-submitting an authorization using T1 or T2 software.
     
  • Discontinuation of barcodes for authorization requests.
     
  • Existing authorizations for individual tax accounts of deceased persons will no longer be cancelled. This will avoid having to re-authorize the same representative after the client’s date of death.

Practitioners should note that these changes will take effect on February 10, 2020 and continue to use the existing Representative authorization processes until that date.

published: 6/10/2019

The Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, has released the Report on the Canada Revenue Agency’s 2018 Serving You Better Consultations with Small and Medium Businesses.

Stay up to date on the implementation of CRA’s action plan by tracking how the CRA is helping small and medium businesses.

published: 4/30/2019

The Canada Revenue Agency offers free in-person support and guidance to small businesses and self-employed individuals to help them understand their tax obligations, and avoid common errors that could end up costing time and money. Check out the details in this presentation and visit canada.ca/cra-liaison-officer for more information on the Liaison Officer service.

published: 11/15/2018

This is a reminder that your clients might have to submit the new Form NR95 Authorizing or Cancelling a Representative for a Non-Resident Tax Account to maintain your current authorization(s).

If not already done, owners of non-resident tax accounts must reauthorize their current representatives using Form NR95 by December 31, 2018 to maintain their existing authorization. All future authorizations must be submitted to the Canada Revenue Agency using Form NR95. Visit the CRA website for more information on the new process and/or to obtain the new form.

published: 1/29/2018

New services

  • Introducing the Pensionable and insurable earnings review (PIER) service– In February 2018, a new service will be introduced in My Business Account and Represent a Client (level 2 and 3 representatives) that will display:
    • a list of PIER cases sorted by tax year or case number
    • a detailed summary of PIER discrepancies
    • a list of employees included in the PIER, including their total earnings, pensionable earnings, insurable earnings, deductions reported and required, and deficiencies.
  • Changes to Form T183 and Form T1013T183, Information Return for Electronic Filing of an Individual's Income Tax and Benefit Return, no longer has an area for taxpayers to authorize a representative to deal with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Instead, authorization is given through T1013, Authorizing or Cancelling a Representative.
  • Auto-fill a T2 Return – The latest version of a T2 return will be available with Auto-fill my return for authorized individuals to import, review, and accept into their EFILE software.
  • Submit a Business consent form RC59 through EFILE – Approved Efilers can now submit electronic business consent (RC59) or cancel business consent or delegated authority (RC59X) forms online year round through certified EFILE software.
  • View transactions and pay balances with CRA BizApp – The CRA has released a new mobile web app called CRA BizApp. This app lets small businesses and sole proprietors view their business account balances and make payments by pre-authorized debit to their corporation, goods and services tax / harmonized sales tax (GST/HST), payroll, and excise duty accounts.

Enhanced services

  • Don’t make clients wait for notices of assessment; get them an Express NOA – This service delivers a notice of assessment directly into your certified tax software shortly after you file the return electronically. To use the service, individuals must be registered for online mail and file electronically using a certified tax software.
  • ReFILE  lets you adjust returns using tax software – The ReFILE service now lets individuals send the CRA changes to their return using NETFILE filing software. Individuals must make sure they receive their notice of assessment before sending a change through ReFILE.
  • Get Online mail directly in My Account – The CRA is adding more mail for individuals to receive directly in My Account. This tax season, online mail provides correspondence about tax free savings accounts, notices of assessment, benefit notices and slips, and more, including correspondence from some of the CRA’s review programs (e.g. requests for receipts).
  • Protect your account with Account Alerts – For added security, when a representative is added, deleted, or changed on an individual’s account, an email will be sent to the individual notifying them of the recent activity on their account.
  • Automatically fill in parts of a return with Auto-fill my return – Authorized representatives will now see more information, such as their clients’ repayable balance for the Home Buyers’ Plan and the Lifelong Learning Plan.

Changed credits and deductions

  • Canada caregiver credit – This non-refundable tax credit replaces the family caregiver credit, the credit for infirm dependants age 18 or older, and the caregiver credit. It gives tax relief to eligible individuals who have a spouse or common-law partner or a dependant, with an impairment in physical or mental functions.
  • Disability tax credit (DTC) certification – Nurse practitioners across Canada can now certify the application form for the DTC.
  • Medical expense tax credit – If you need medical intervention to conceive a child, you may be eligible to claim certain expenses even if you do not have a medical condition. These expenses are the same as those that would generally be allowable for individuals who have a medical condition. If you had fertility-related expenses for any of the 10 previous calendar years and you have not claimed them, you can request a change to your income tax and benefit return(s) to include these eligible expenses.
  • Tuition, education, and textbook credits – As of January 1, 2017, the federal education and textbook credits were eliminated. However, you can still carry forward unused amounts from previous years. Also, with certain conditions, you may now be able to claim the tuition amount for fees you paid to a post-secondary educational institution for occupational skills courses, even if they are not at a post-secondary level.
  • Children’s credits – As of January 1, 2017, the children’s arts tax credit and children’s fitness tax credit were eliminated.
  • Public transit tax credit – As of July 1, 2017, this credit was eliminated. For this tax year, you can claim the cost of eligible public transit expenses only for travel taken from January 1 to June 30, 2017.

published: 1/29/2018

Did you know businesses can use the CRA’s Internet file transfer or Web Forms application to file some information returns online? Using Web Forms, businesses can access some electronic slips, send them to the CRA, and receive an immediate confirmation of receipt. Our Web Forms application saves time and money.

Use the Web Forms application to:

  • file original, additional, amended, and cancelled slips directly from the CRA website;
  • validate data in real time, with prompts to correct errors before filing your slips;
  • calculate summary totals;
  • save and import information;
  • print slips for recipients; and
  • securely send encrypted returns online.

For more information, go to the Web Forms page.