Income Tax Tips

March 15, 2012 | Christina

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The Canada Revenue Agency states that your 2011 Tax Return for Personal Income Tax needs to be filed on or before April 30, 2012.

When completed, most hope to receive a refund or try to minimize the amount owing.

The February/March 2012 issue of Healthy Directions offers several tips that may help individuals reduce their tax bills.

Here are some of their tips on tax breaks:

1. Plan Ahead
Gather all of your receipts and be sure to submit your income tax and benefit return before the tax-filing deadline in order to avoid paying late-filing penalties.

2.  Registered Retirement Savings Plan  (RRSP)
Any income you earn in a registered retirement savings plan is exempt from tax, as long as the funds stay in the plan.  RRSPs also give you a break at tax time.

3.  Tax-Free Savings Account (TFSA)
A tax-free savings account is a "great way to save money" because you don't have to pay tax on any income earned from investments in your TFSA.

4.  Public Transit Tax Credit
If you or someone in your family is a regular user of public transit, you may be able to "claim a non-refundable tax credit based on the cost of eligible transit passes."

5.  Child Care Expenses
For those who have children, you may be able to claim "child care expenses that you or your spouse or common-law partner paid so that either of you could work, do research, or go to school."

For additional tips, the Canada Revenue Agency has an interesting section entitled "Know Your Credits, Deductions, and Benefits" at their Get Ready to File Your Tax Return page.  This section provides tips on how to reduce your taxes for:

  • Individuals and Families
  • Seniors
  • Persons with Disabilities
  • Homeowners
  • Students
  • Self-employed
  • Tax professionals
  • Tradespersons

Likewise, the Certified General Accountants of Ontario publish a booklet entitled Your Personal Tax Planning Guide.  It is available for free on the internet.  Click HERE to view the 2011-12 edition.