When the time comes to prepare your Canadian personal tax return, it can be easy to forget a few details, which can pose significant problems and delay your tax refunds.
If you are not using a program like QuickBooks to keep track of your information, and you need to organize your paperwork, then this checklist will help to ensure you have what is needed to prepare your return. It is always a good idea to find a way to keep track of your tax documents throughout the year to make tax time easier for you. Perhaps this year is a great year to start; check out our New Year Resolutions for your finances.
Did you get married, divorced, move?
If you’ve changed your name or marital status or moved since you filed last year’s return, your first step is to ensure your personal details have been updated with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA). Many of these necessary updates can be made instantly online for CRA MyAccount holders. Other changes, such as a name change of both your first and last names, require that you contact CRA directly.
You need to have to following at hand (if you did your taxes last year using a TurboTax product, this information will carry-forward or be pulled in when you auto-fill your return)
- Social Insurance Numbers for you, your spouse, and any dependants (if applicable)
- Dates of birth for family members
- Net income amounts for your spouse and any dependants for whom you’re claiming credits such as the Canada Caregiver Amount, which is one of many you may be entitled to.
- The total amount of instalment payments made to CRA
- Notice of Assessments from last year’s return
If you have capital cost allowance (CCA) balances, or any unused losses or credits you plan to apply, it’s a good idea to have a copy last year’s tax return and your Notice of Assessment nearby. Or, if you used TurboTax last year to complete your tax return, the CCA amount will be brought forward automatically, as will your RRSP contribution balance.
- T Income Slips (T4, T4A, T4E, T3, T5, T5008, T4AOAS, T4AP, T5007)
- Other Income
- Tips and gratuities not already on your T4 or T4A
- Rental income (and expenses as a part of your T776 form)
- Self-employment (and expenses as a part of your T2125 for each business – fishing, farming, small businesses, freelance work, and contractors)
- Support payments received.
- Capital Gains including the sale of your principal residence.
- Amounts for carrying charges and interest expenses related to your investments. This includes fees for managing your investments.
- Home Buyers’ Plan, and Lifelong Learning Plan repayment amounts.
Expenses & Credits (a sampling as what you need changes depending upon your life situation)
- Adoption expenses
- Charitable donations
- Employment Expenses (Form T2200, completed by your employer to claim employment expenses, and a T777 outlining those expenses)
- Home accessibility expenses
- Medical expenses. If you’re claiming any medical expenses for other dependent family members (other than you, your spouse, and your minor children), the dependent’s net income is required
- Moving expenses
- Personal attendant/facility care expenses
- Receipts for childcare expenses
- Receipts for classroom/school supplies (teachers and early childhood educators)
- Student loan interest amounts
- Support payments made
- Tuition slips
- Union dues not included on your T4 slip
Depending on your province of residence, you may also need a few other amounts for certain provincial credits such as: Rent receipts – Property tax amounts – RL Slips (Quebec)- Seniors’ activity receipts
If you’re a CRA MyAccount holder, you can import these items directly into your return using CRA’s Auto-fill my return service.
Looking for an income tax calculator for your province or territory. TurboTax has you covered; simply enter in your province and amounts, it will calculate your taxes accordingly.
If at the end of the day you feel a bit overwhelmed trying to make sure you have everything, consider TurboTax Live Assist & Review and get unlimited help and advice as you do your taxes, plus a final review before you file. Or, choose TurboTax Live Full Service and have one of our tax experts do you return from start to finish.