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As thousands of people are devastated by the fires surrounding Fort McMurray and areas in north-east Alberta, the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) has announced tax relief measures for those affected.
MNP can assist clients by filing and requesting relief on their behalf with the CRA. A relief request will be filed after you have been fully assessed and any penalties or interest owed have been addressed.
There are several ways in which the CRA’s tax relief measures could apply to you and your business such as:
Penalties for late-filing and interest on any balance owing may be waived by the CRA. In this extraordinary situation, the CRA will look at your history of tax compliance. If you have an account which has been overdue for some time or have a history of filing late, it’s possible you may be turned down for tax relief.
If however, you usually file and pay any amounts owing on time, the CRA will grant relief by waiving penalties and interest. While short-term relief will be granted, we still encourage our clients to pay any balances owed as soon as they are financially able.
While the CRA website does not specifically say there is relief available for interest or penalties on overdue source deductions, we expect that the relief program for source deductions will be similar to GST. As a result, while we expect that short-term relief will be granted, we would encourage clients to remit payroll deductions to the CRA as soon as is reasonably possible.
Currently the CRA has not given an “end date” for relief. This will likely be announced in the coming weeks when it becomes clearer how long businesses may be interrupted. For the time being, relief is being granted for the month of May, though it may be extended for several more months depending on the extent of damage and business disruption.
Our thoughts are with all those who have been affected by this devastating turn of events. As a firm committed to making the communities we work and live in stronger and stand behind the Fort McMurray, the region and its people, now and for the long term as residents and businesses regroup and start planning for the future.
For more information as to how these relief measures may apply to you and your business, contact Hilde Stiekema, CPA, CA at 403.380.1612.
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