News and Media

The Canada Revenue Agency's Battle Against Taxpayers Has Just Begun

8th May 2018

CRA is good (sort of) at collecting money owed; when it comes to administering programs that pay money out, not so much.

As we've come to the end of the first stage of tax filing season for most Canadians, people breathe a sigh of relief that their annual tax nightmare is over. But unfortunately for many, the real ordeal is just getting cued up.

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5 things you need to do to win (or survive) a CRA tax audit

25th April 2018

So you’ve filed your taxes and received your notice of assessment, but now there’s another letter from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) in your mailbox with a request to see more of your paperwork. What do you do?

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Canada Revenue Agency farcical in treatment of taxpayers

25th March 2018

The Canada Revenue Agency made headlines last week and not in a good way. The B.C. Supreme Court awarded over $1.6 million in damages, including punitive damages, against the CRA, having found that its agents had committed the tort of malicious prosecution. The judgment chronicles the type of prosecutorial blinders that I see all too often in my practice.

The CRA investigations officer made up his mind that the couple who owned a restaurant and nightclub in Nanaimo, B.C. (the Samaroos), had unreported cash sales. Once he made up his mind, he did whatever he could to secure a conviction — and the facts be damned!

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The culture at the CRA is changing – and we should all be concerned

12th March 2018

I've been immersed in the world of personal finance for about 25 years. I'm aging now – as is my wife, Carolyn. She regularly reminds me that a gentleman always remembers a woman's birthday but never her age. Sorry, dear, I know exactly how old you are. But I digress.

The point is, I've been around long enough to remember what it was like to deal with the taxman of a generation ago. We're in a very different world today. The culture at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is not what it used to be – and we should all be concerned. 

Twenty years ago, the CRA was full of reasonable people who used common sense when looking more closely at your tax affairs.

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