Security & Privacy, Tax Basics

What is NETFILE and why is it important?

NETFILE will be open for those ready to get filing for the 2018 income tax year, on February 18, 2019.


NETFILE is currently available for electronic filing of your 2014 through 2017 personal income tax returns, in case you have not completed them as of yet.  There is no better time than the present to get caught up on filing and get all of your deductions and tax credits that you are entitled to.

On the bright side, NETFILE is constantly improving, making it easier for us to file our Canadian income tax returns easily and securely.

Long gone is the need for an access code from the CRA, and thankfully, we no longer need to upload our documents in a “.tax” file from our computers.

What you may not have known about NETFILE, is that you can only use it provided that you are using a NETFILE-certified software product, such as TurboTax.

Thanks to these upgrades in NETFILE and the expertise of TurboTax, Canadians are filing for, and getting their tax refunds faster than years before, and the information being filed to the CRA is more accurate than ever.


The Process

Once your personal tax return has been filed using TurboTax, through the CRA’s NETFILE, you will receive a confirmation number which is your proof that your tax return was filed and received by the CRA.

Once the CRA gets around you processing your tax return, a Notice of Assessment is then prepared and placed in your MyAccount mailbox on the CRA website.

Effective February 2018, ReFILE was introduced by the CRA in order to allow us to amend and electronically re-submit tax returns, through NETFILE.  You can only utilize ReFILE, if you filed your return using NETFILE (or EFILE) in the first place).


Is Your Tax Information Safe?

The security surrounding your confidential tax information is extremely important to the CRA, and to TurboTax, so the CRA has ensured that NETFILE uses top-line encryption software, and security procedures in order to protect your information at all times.

According to the CRA, with the NETFILE service, the CRA itself is responsible for the security of the information once it is received and that the data sent using NETFILE is encrypted.

The Canada Revenue Agency also points out that they perform “a number of identification and tax-related validations” to prevent fraud and that their secure procedures include only sending the Notice of Assessment and/or refund to the address or bank account that the CRA has on file – information that only you, the taxpayer, or your legal representative can change.

There is no danger of someone else being able to access your tax return and get the refund you should be getting, for instance, or trying to NETFILE a second personal (T1) tax return under your name.


Remember: For safety and security, ease and accuracy, at tax filing time, make sure to use TurboTax and NETFILE.