Are you feeling anxious and uncertain about missing the May 1st, 2023 tax filing deadline? If so, rest easy. It happens to the best of us!

It’s never too late to file your return. We’ll show you how. 

This article will walk you through all aspects of filing late so you can do it with certainty and the support you deserve.  

Key Takeaways
  1. You can still file a tax return even if you miss the deadline.
  2. If you file late, you may be charged a penalty, but you can try to request interest relief.
  3. If you don’t owe taxes, or receive a refund, you won’t be charged any fees or penalties for filing late.

Can I still file my tax return if I miss the deadline?

Yes! Here’s how you can file today.  

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Once you complete and review your income tax return, use NETFILE, the electronic tax-filing service that lets you do your personal taxes online, to send your return directly to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). This service is open until 3 AM ET on January 26, 2024. So, good news, you’re still eligible to file. 

TIP: If you’re expecting a refund and still haven’t filed, there are no penalties or interest charges. If you owe money to the CRA, file as soon as you can because you’ll be charged a late-filing penalty along with interest charges until you pay the balance.

What if I’m self-employed?

Self-employed tax returns are due on June 15, 2023, but any balance owed is due on May 1, 2023. If you’re curious, here are more details about filing as a self-employed individual.

What will I need to file my taxes?

If you have all your documents, slips, and receipts at your fingertips, you’re ready to go! To make sure you have everything necessary, here’s a handy checklist so you won’t miss a thing.

The only tax checklist you need

Get organized and tackle your taxes like a pro. This tax checklist tells you everything you need to file your 2022 return on time and accurately.

What happens if I don’t owe taxes?

If you don’t owe any balance from previous tax returns, you won’t pay penalties or interest, and that’s a win!

Refunds, however, can be withheld until you file. The CRA won’t be able to accurately calculate certain benefits and credits since those depend on the information you provide on your tax return. Examples would include things like the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) or the GST/HST credit.

It’s best to file and find out where you stand.

What happens if I owe taxes?

If you owe taxes to the CRA, payments are due with your tax return on May 1, 2023. After this deadline, late fees and interest charges may begin to apply. If you owe money to the CRA after missing the tax deadline and can’t pay your debt in full, you can always set up a payment arrangement with the CRA.

How do I know if I owe taxes?

TurboTax automatically calculates this for you. See how:

Free Income Tax Calculator 2022

Fill in your income and expenses and see your refund or taxes owing estimate.

What are the late penalties?

If you owe money and don’t file on time, the late-filing penalty charged by  the CRA & Revenu Québec are 5% of your balance due plus 1% interest for each full month that your return is late up to a maximum of 12-months.

Let’s go through an example together:

If you file your taxes six months late and already owe $2,500 in tax debt, you’d have to pay $275 in late-filing penalties and interest to the CRA for a total owing amount of $2,775. (Residents of Québec would have penalties and interest from Revenu Québec as well.) 

Here’s the math:


Late-Filing Penalty

1% Interest for Each Month You’re Late

Total Penalty & Interest Fees

Total %




Total $


5% of $2,500


6% of $2,500


TIP: If you can’t pay the full amount you owe, the CRA will accept late payments, but you’ll be charged compound daily interest on all amounts due. It pays to pay fast. (The CRA Interest rates can increase each quarter, it is set at 9% until June 30, 2023.)

If you owe taxes for previous years, your payments will go towards your oldest debt first.

Can I make instalment payments?

Yes, you can pay in installments. Make sure to contact the CRA and explore the various payment arrangements depending on your situation. 

Generally, there are 3 ways to pay taxes owed: 

  1. Online banking: Set up CRA (or Revenu Québec) as a payee on your online banking bill payment service, and use your Social Insurance Number (SIN) as your account number. 
  2. CRA My Account: You can make payments directly from your bank account on a set date, and even set up installment payments.
  3. In person: You can always pay in person at most major banks, just bring along your remittance voucher or original remittance slip.

Choose whatever method you’re most comfortable with! 

Can I cancel or waive penalties and interest?

Under certain circumstances, the CRA will consider offering relief. It’s best to acknowledge late or incorrect tax returns, or if your payment is late, as soon as possible with the CRA to see if they can offer options to ease your payment burden. 

There are 3 ways you can do this:

  1.  Request to waive penalties or interest(Also possible with Revenu Quebéc.)
  2. Use the CRA’s Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) which allows you to notify them of any unreported income or mistakes on any return, including any previous years.
  3.  Apply for COVID-related relief if you’ve received COVID-19 benefits.

As daunting as it can feel, remember that the CRA is on your side and there to help. 

And so are we. You’ve got this.10

Seems complicated? Let us take care of it for you.

TurboTax is here to give you all the support and confidence you need to take the worry out of filing your taxes late.