Do You Qualify for Tax Relief?

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The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) administers legislation that gives the Minister of National Revenue discretion to:

  • cancel or waive penalties or interest
  • accept certain late, amended, or revoked elections (income tax only)
  • refund or reduce the amount payable beyond the normal three-year period (individuals and testamentary trusts only)

This legislation is commonly called the taxpayer relief provisions.

Cancel or waive penalties or interest

The Minister may grant relief from penalty or interest when the following types of situations prevent a taxpayer from meeting their tax obligations:

  • extraordinary circumstances;
  • actions of the CRA;
  • inability to pay or financial hardship;
  • other circumstances

Late, amended, or revoked elections

The Income Tax Act and its Regulations contain many election provisions that give you the opportunity to decide on an alternative tax treatment in conducting your financial affairs for income tax purposes. Most election provisions do not:

  • permit you to file an election once the due date for making the election is missed; or
  • give you the ability to modify or cancel an original election that was filed on time.

Refund or reduce the amount payable beyond the normal three-year period

For individuals (other than a trust) and testamentary trusts, the Income Tax Act sets a three-year limitation period from the:

  • end of the tax year to file an income tax return to claim a tax refund;
  • date of the original Notice of Assessment to request an adjustment to an assessment issued for a previous tax year.

If you would like more information about circumstances that warrant relief from penalties and interest about the income tax elections that can be filed late, amended, or revoked; or about filing an income tax return to claim a refund or requesting an adjustment to a return beyond the normal three-year period, contact GB Pilley & Associates Ltd., Chartered Professional Accountants at 604 926 3522.

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