Take the mystery out of organizing your tax papers.  If you are a member of the Tri-City Chamber of Commerce, register for this upcoming seminar March 16.  Space is limited. ...

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There are four main changes to CPP effective January 1 2012: The requirement to stop working or reduce earnings in order to apply for early benefits is removed. CPP recipients who continue to work will continue to make premium contributions (as well as their employers) to age 70. The rate of adjustment for early and late pension application increases. The low earnings years ‘drop-out’ provision is increased. These changes do not affect those already receiving CPP retirement benefits UNLESS they will not be 65 before 2012 AND are still earning pensionable earnings. These individuals will have to start contributing again in 2012. For those who are ...

The following are 4 commonly made mistakes that can problems on tax returns in Canada. RRSP Contributions not claimed RRSP contributions made in the first 60 days of the year (Jan 1 – Mar 1 2010) must be reported on the personal income tax return for the previous year (2009), even if not claimed as a deduction. Contributing to non-registered charities Contributions made to Canadian registered charities may be claimed on your tax return. Check your receipts for a RR# indicating the charity is registered. Appliances do not qualify for the Home Renovation Tax Credit There are many other expenses that qualify – for a ...

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The goal of an RRSP is to save for your retirement, accessing the funds when you will be in a lower tax bracket.  Depending on your age and other income at retirement, it is usually beneficial to contribute 10 – 20% of your taxable income.  To determine the amount that will achieve your financial goals, make an appointment with your financial planner. Before you contribute to your RRSP check your contribution limit using Quick Access on the CRA website or your 2008 Notice of Assessment. Watch that you don’t over contribute – CRA has started to impose penalties on excess over contributions. To use Quick ...

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Open a Tax Free Savings Account (TFSA) to save for anything you want – a car, a vacation, a wedding…  Most of us have a rainy day fund – for the unexpected things in life – a TFSA is the perfect account for this type of savings.  If you are 18 or older, you can contribute up to $5,000 per year. The funds can be withdrawn and re-contributed without tax penalty.  The contributions won’t lower your taxes but the income earned in the TFSA isn’t taxable either.  If you don’t have enough to put into the TFSA now, don’t worry, the unused ...

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There is a very easy way to avoid paying penalties to Canada Revenue Agency – File on Time.  Late filing penalties start at 5% of the balance owing; then for every month you procrastinate an additional 1% is added, to a maximum of 12 months.  If filing late is a way of life for you (late in any one of the three preceding years), then the penalties increase to 10% of the balance owing plus 2% per month to a maximum of 20 months.  Of course when you owe money to the government penalties are only one part of the extra costs you ...

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