March 17, 2017
As the 2016 tax return deadline approaches, CPA Alberta wants to help you relieve the stress of this spring’s reporting season by proving tips you can use while preparing your tax return. These 67 tax tips touch on a variety of topics, including income from rent or scholarships, tax-deductible union dues, employment medical benefits, education expenses, tax credits, and much more.
These tips, intended to be used as general guidelines, are useful for preparing tax articles leading up to the April 30, 2017 deadline. And, although the deadline for contributing to RRSPs for the 2016 tax year has passed (March 1, 2017), CPA Alberta also has 14 helpful RRSP tips to help you prepare for the 2017 tax year.
- Even if you have no taxable income for 2016, you should file a personal income return as you might be eligible for the Federal GST/HST Credit and the Alberta Carbon Levy Rebate. Low-income seniors can also re-apply for the Guaranteed Income Supplement by filing an annual personal income tax return.
- If you run your own business, you are required to retain books and records that relate to a specific taxation year for a minimum of six years after the end of that year.
- If you are able to reduce your taxes payable to zero without using all of your available credits, you might consider transferring some of these unused credits to your spouse’s return. Don’t let your credits go to waste.
- If you are a Canadian resident and have received income from foreign sources, you must report this income in Canadian dollars on your tax return.
- If you are unable to use certain deductions or tax credits in a particular tax year, you might be able to use them in a future year. Common carry-forward items include charitable donations, home office expenses, and tuition, education, and textbook credits.
- You might be eligible for the caregiver credit if you provide in-home care for a relative who resides with you.
Information for RRSP and Tax Tips is provided as a public service by CPA Alberta. For specific advice about filing a 2016 tax return, please consult with the Canada Revenue Agency or a Chartered Professional Accountant (CPA).
CPA Alberta acknowledges with thanks the contributions of CPA British Columbia in preparing the Tax Tips materials.