Tax season can be an incredibly stressful time of year for Canadians. Whether you are an individual, a business owner, or a student, filing your taxes is extremely important and overwhelming all at once. Managing the streams of paperwork, the numerous classifications, and credits, and doing it all on a deadline can be an exhausting and trying process. But it is an annual necessity, and when the calendar flips to January, it is time to start getting ready.
The 2022 tax season has arrived, with the tax filing deadline set for May 2nd. Typically, the deadline is April 30th, but that deadline has been bumped a couple of days, as it falls on a Saturday. That means Canadians have a couple of extra days to prepare and file this year, and preparation is the absolute key to tax season. Starting preparation far in advance is always the best practice for taxes. Below, we’ll provide a breakdown of some of the best ways to prepare for the upcoming tax season to minimize the stress and maximize the results.
Utilize Your CRA My Account
In the time before the digital age, tax season was an even bigger hassle for Canadians. Important documents would have to be mailed, accessing key information required navigating bureaucracy, and it was all the more time-consuming. Today, numerous resources online make tax season significantly less of a drudge. One of them is your CRA my account.
The Canada Revenue Agency, or CRA, is the federal body that collects taxes and administers benefits. If you haven’t already created your CRA online account, this is critical. A CRA account will allow you to access a large variety of important information that will make tax season a lot less stressful.
You can view or make changes to past returns on your CRA account, set up pre-authorized debit, and update important information. You can also electronically receive your T4s, which inform you of your income pre-taxes. It is also where a lot of important information from government sources is, so you can hear about significant updates and gather some of the necessary details to successfully prepare for tax season. Your CRA account is an online resource that helps you start to get ready and organize yourself, and it is something every Canadian should have set up before tax season.
Gather Pertinent Information
While your T4s and previous returns are critical information to have, there is much more you’re going to need before you are ready to file your taxes. Taxes are all about providing accurate information, and to do that, there are many different things you need. Tax returns are all-encompassing and largely dependent on the individual situation. If you are a small business owner who has invested in real estate, the information you need will be very different from a 20-year-old student using loans to pay through university.
Accessing the necessary info as early as possible will make this a much less stressful experience in the long run. Scrambling to secure things like medical expenses and student loan reports is not fun for anyone, so starting in advance is key. There are a lot of different details you are going to need to secure, whether you are filing as an individual or a business.
Some of the different pertinent numbers you’re going to need will include bank statements, records of income, investment income, hobby income, and detailed information on how you’ve received your money. If you are going to make any deductions or claims, you’ll need records as well. There is a lot of information you will need to collect, and it is better to start early than late.
Work with Professionals
Utilizing your CRA account and gathering pertinent information are necessary first steps in the process, but to maximize your returns and have the least stressful tax season possible, working with professionals is the optimal decision. A tax accountant is a specialist with a comprehensive understanding of the Canadian tax system and the rules, regulations, and processes you must follow. A tax accountant can help you maximize your return for the best possible and least anxiety-inducing results.
Fiscal Expert is a team of tax accountants with over 15 years of experience helping everyone from businesses to families with bookkeeping, tax preparation, and tax returns. Fiscal Expert can help with personal tax services, corporate taxes, and much more. With a high-level understanding of the modern tax environment, they can help you understand what deductibles and tax credits you are eligible for to get the maximum possible refund.
Fiscal Expert services are comprehensive and customized to specific needs. They begin with a consultation and the reviewing of personal information and don’t just conclude when your taxes are filed. Fiscal Expert services include 12 months of tax support with every return prepared. Tax season doesn’t need to be a time of anxiety and late-night research sessions to figure out credit eligibility. With Fiscal Expert, you receive expert, customized advice at an affordable cost.
There is a lot of anxiety that comes with tax season. Particularly for Canadians who have missed deadlines or have messy books, knowing what you owe and what you are owed is a difficult and confusing process. Many choose to push their tax returns to the last minute, and some will bypass the process entirely. But this is not the way to go. Tax season is about preparation, about starting early to minimize the stress. The more prepared for tax season you are, the best experience you have.
There are several different ways to prepare for tax season. For starters, using your CRA account to acquire T4 forms and other necessary information is an easy way for anyone to get a jump-start. You should also start as early as possible finding important information like additional income and expenses, such as potential deductibles, real estate income, and medical expenses.
But the best possible way to prepare for tax season is by working with professionals like Fiscal Expert. With Fiscal Expert, you can find customized, affordable services that fit the needs of individuals, families, and business owners. Tax season doesn’t have to be a drag, and with Fiscal Expert, you can get the most out of your returns.