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It’s tax time!

By Tara Clow Apr 15, 2024 | 1:52 PM

Tax deadlines are quickly approaching.

You must get those returns in by April 30, especially if you owe.

“You’re going to start paying interest beyond April 30, if you owe them any money. If you don’t file your return and you have a balance owing, they’ll charge a penalty, It’ll be five per cent of your balance owing and one per cent for every month, that you’re late filing,” UFile Tax Specialist Gerry Vittoratos says.

If you are owed a refund from the government on the other hand, you’ll want to file as soon as your return is completed.

“The money is better in your hands, than the government. I always use this analogy, if somebody else owed you money, would you wait on those people if you could get that money right away? It’d be a no, so why would you do that favour to the government? Take that money, and put it to better use. I know a lot of people have debts that are quite high, especially right now with inflation. If you have high-interest debt, if you have a car loan, if you have a mortgage payment, take that refund and put it to better use. Pay off those debts,” Vittoratos adds.

If this is your first time filing, educate yourself. He suggests going to the Canada Revenue Agency site first and getting the federal guide so you know what is included on your tax return. He also recommends starting a filing to start archiving properly, where you can save all of your tax receipts that can be eligible for things like donations and, medical expenses.

“A lot of people think that tax season is only three or four months in the middle of the year. It’s actually really a year-round process,” Vittoratos says.

If you don’t feel confident doing your taxes on your own, several reputable firms can complete them for you. Vittoratos suggests talking to a friend or family member and asking if they can make a recommendation.