It is the time of year when many accountants and tax preparers live, breathe, eat and sleep taxes (leaving very little time to write about them!). And while much of it is routine, there are numerous issues that arise, the treatment for which is not immediately apparent and can actually be quite interesting (perhaps more so to a tax nerd), some of which are compiled below:Read More
The Goods and Services Tax or GST is a consumption tax that is charged on most goods and services sold within Canada, regardless of where your business is located. Subject to certain exceptions, all businesses are required to charge GST , currently at 5%, plus applicable provincial sales taxes. A business effectively acts as an agent for Revenue Canada by collecting the taxes and remitting them on a periodic basis. Businesses are also permitted to claim the taxes paid on expenses incurred that relate to their business activities. These are referred to as Input Tax Credits.
Does Your Business Need to Register?
Prior to engaging in any kind of commercial activity in Canada, all business owners need to determine how the GST and relevant provincial taxes apply to them. Essentially, all businesses that sell goods and services in Canada, for profit, are required to charge GST, except in the following circumstances:
Whether you are an individual or a business in Canada, taxes are an inescapable part of your existence. All sources of income need to be calculated, tax returns needs to be filed and taxes owing must be paid. This is somewhat facilitated if you are an employee as your employer tends to take care of the majority of remittances. Self-employed individuals, sole proprietorships, partnerships and corporations on the other hand, must account for their income and expenses , determine taxes payable and remit the appropriate amounts. Additionally, businesses are also responsible for other filings including GST/HST and QST and payroll. A lack of knowledge, imperfect accounting systems and the business of running a business sometimes interfere with the timeliness of filings. The Canada Revenue Agency attempts to curb these tardy behaviours by imposing penalties and interest on late filings as follows:
CRA Targets Tax Shelters:
The CRA is auditing "gifting tax shelters" ,which mainly target middle income earners. It seems that the tax shelters have been falsifying charitable donation amounts eg. a donation of $30 will turn into a donation receipt of $100 resulting in a tax credit up to $45. It is estimated that 170,000 taxpayers will be assessed for about $2.5 Billion.Read More