2023 Tax Filing Checklist: Essential Items You Need
What You Need to File Your Taxes!
There are many advantages to filing your taxes accurately and on time, as a company or as an individual. The reason why most people hire a trusted financial partner like AgileCPA is so that they can rest assured that this aspect of their business or work life is being handled reliably. Without filing your tax appropriately, you may not be able to access some benefits like; tax rebates, tax benefits (Covid 19 benefits, Canada Child Benefits and Guaranteed Income Supplement), tax credits, special tax programs (provincial or federal), GST/HST refunds, payment assistance, and a lot more.
Depending on your specific situation, it may be difficult to keep track of all your expenses during the tax year and it could be even more demanding to organize and maintain a valid repository of receipts and forms required by CRA effectively. For individuals or corporations and businesses that manage to keep track of the aforementioned items, they sometimes are unprepared for audits or post assessments as these documents may have ended up being disposed too early or are simply unavailable at the time of the assessment as stipulated by CRA. This is where having a trusted financial partner is also very helpful as you will most certainly not be in this position.
This article has been prepared to act as a quick guide to help you prepare your documents before you begin the process of filing your taxes. By the end of this article, you will have a better understanding of what documents you need to file your taxes and you will be able to categorise these documents effectively in readiness to commence the process individually or with the help of a financial partner.
There are three main categories or types of documents that you require to file your taxes, below is a brief list of these categories and some simplified details of each, and a quick summary in form of an optimal checklist that will prove invaluable to you.
Top 3 Document Types for your Optimal Tax Checklist
At this point, we need to highlight the fact that before you begin the process, there are some personal or unique information that will be required by the CRA. This information will serve as a means of identifying you as an individual or identifying your company as a business. For example, as an individual, CRA may require your Social Insurance Number (SIN), Date of Birth, Previous Notice of Assessment(s), details of instalment payments to CRA (where applicable) and other information unique to you.
You will need to get these ready for yourself and any required persons before you start the process. Business specific unique information where required, would also be highlighted to you by CRA or your financial partner.
Income Related Information/Documents
What documents do I need to provide for income?
Depending on the situation, the CRA may require the net income amounts for you and your spouse or any dependent you are claiming tax credits for in addition to the personal information of these individuals as highlighted above.
If you are employed, you may need to provide the following duly completed forms: T4
statement of renumeration paid, T4002 self-employed business or professional, or a T5013 Statement of Partnership Income Form. If your income is received from savings and investments, the CRA may require form(s);T5 Statement of Investment, T3 statement of Trust Income Allocations and Designations or T5008 Statement of Securities Transactions.
For persons who receive their income after retirement, they may be required to present one or more of the following forms; T4A Statement of Pension, Retirement Annuity and Other Income, T4A(P) Statement of Canada Pension Plan Benefits, T4A(OAS) statement of Old Age Security, T4RSP Statement of RRSP Income and T4RIF statement of Income from a Registered Retirement Income Fund.
Finally, if you are temporarily or otherwise unemployed, you will need to provide form(s); T5007 Statement of Benefits-Workers Compensation or Social Assistance Benefits, T4E Statement of Employment Insurance and Other Benefits, and T4A Covid 19 benefits received (if applicable).
You will need to review the above documents and prepare with regards to the sections and forms that are applicable to you. If you have more than one source of income, you may need to provide one or more of the required documents under each section, based on your unique circumstance.
Documents on Expenses Available for Tax Deductions
As discussed above, there are many tax deduction provisions accessible to eligible individuals and businesses, but you will be required to provide evidence of expenses in forms of receipts, bank records and other applicable documents. There are different ways to achieve this and as discussed above, the choice would be dependent on your unique situation and your need to employ the services of a trusted partner or chose to file your taxes individually.
What documents do I need for Tax Deductions?
Some applicable deductions include; Annual Union or Professional Dues, Moving Expenses (where applicable), Home Office Expenses, Employment Insurance Premiums, Monthly Contributions, Pension Deductions, Disability Supports Deductions, and others.
There are also some tuition based deductions on fees, student loans and tuition costs as well as deductions relating to family, caregiver expenses and child care costs. You will need to provide documents on these deductions if they are applicable to you. A trusted financial partner will simplify this for you easily.
Documents on Expenses Available for Tax Credits
Although this section is interrelated in many ways to the section on deductions above, it would be good to categorise the expenses uniquely as it would make the process more efficient and provide a succinct basis to manage the accompanying or required documents appropriately and accurately.
What documents do I need for Tax Credits
While some tax credits become applicable on a provincial level, others are applicable on a federal level. Tax credits in general ease a lot of the tax burden on individuals and businesses alike, and an appropriate approach and attention to tax credits can lead to a substantial amount of savings during the tax season.
Depending on the situation, tax credits can be issued for a lot of reasons. Some people receive tax credits as a result of their family situations like; dependant disability tax credits, spouse or common-law amount claims, tuition education and text book amounts, interests paid on student loans, tax credits based on pension income amount, volunteer amounts and Canada employment amounts (where applicable).
In addition to the items covered above in this article, there is an optimal checklist of expenses that covers both Tax Credits and Tax Deductions given below.
Optimal Tax Checklist
Income Related Information:
Expense Documents and Receipts:
We have factored in the above list, the most relevant items that re-occur yearly during tax filing and this checklist, in addition to the earlier discussions would ease the burden of the entire process if utilized properly. As simple as the checklist above may seem, there are some considerations that must be accounted for in some instances whilst filing your taxes for your business or yourself and it is always prudent to have a reliable financial partner to ensure effective compliance throughout the process..
At AgileCPA we are always happy to help with all your tax needs, reach out to us today to learn more! We look forward to hearing from and working with you to achieve your goals.
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