Wednesday, February 15, 2012

February to May $$$$$$ keep your money while you earned it $$$$

February 14 is not just Valentines day. It is the first day Canada Customs and Revenue Agency will allow you to start to file your income tax.

We can start them, but their filing system does not run until the 14th.

I do income tax preparations for a living, well part time employment of three months.

I see the programs offered on line and in the store for only 30 to 50 dollars.And it makes me so very sad. People are throwing away money away that should stay in their pockets. I can't help but think that this is a windfall for the government.

There are so many things you can miss.

The usual ones like the kids day care, bus passes and daycare, but do you know that summer camps, summer programs are also a tax deduction.

Then there is medical travel. If you have to travel 40 km away for medical care that is not available in your area, you can claim medical travel.   so it the road trip was 80 Km @.52 that would be $41 in medical expenses. Add on $8 for parking, and $10 for a meal. We have a medical expense of $59 for the one visit. Add on several trips as these things happen to be and we may be looking at $180. Add on the part you paid for glasses, dental care, your out of pocket prescriptions,
If you are on a plan that pays 80% of your medical, add up what was submitted and what you were given. With most medical insurance companies, they pay 80% of the National average. This can work out to as little as 49%. The rest came from your pocket and is a deduction. All the medical should be claimed for the family by the lowest earner. This is because the total  has 3% deducted from it. hence 3% of the lower earner is less that 3% of the higher earner.

The list is so long on what is allowable medical expense,. I will just give you the CCRA link to medical allowable expenses.
Then we can add training to look after a relative in home. If your child had ADD, training for the care is a write off as is your First Aid course.
Which brings me to another point that is not really tax related. If you have to go to Vancouver for medical treatment, you ask your Dr for a TAP form. This does not depend on how much money you have, but that treatment is not available on the Island. This will allow free passage for car and patient. If the patient cannot drive themselves, then the driver is free also for the round trip. 

I has a chap who had been coming for about 5 years and I prepared their taxes. The year he brought his wife, I discovered she was sight impaired. I gave a T2201 and they received  $16,000 in deserved rebate.

I usually get 1 or 2 of these a year.

T2201 covers a deduction for anyone who is impaired on a severe, prolonged and restrictive in the following areas:

1. Has your impairment in physical or mental functions lasted, or is it 
expected to last, for a continuous period of at least 12 months? Yes or No 
If you answered yes, answer Questions 2 to 5 below. 
If you answered no, you are not eligible for the DTC. To claim the disability 
amount, the impairment has to be prolonged (defined on the previous page). 
2. Are you blind? Yes or No 
3. Do you receive life-sustaining therapy  Yes 
or No 
4. Do the effects of your impairment cause you to be markedly restricted 
 in one of the following basic activities of 
daily living, even with the appropriate therapy, medication, and devices? 
- speaking 
- hearing 
- walking 
- elimination (bowel or bladder functions) 
- feeding 
- dressing 
- mental functions necessary for everyday life 

If you have a child in post secondary school, they will receive a T2202. This will stat their tuition and number of months in full or part time education. It full time, each month is worth $400 deduction and part time is worth $125 a month, plus:

Eligible tuition fees include:
  • admission fees;
  • charges for the use or library or laboratory facilities;
  • examination fees;
  • application fees (but only if the student later enrolls in the institution);
  • charges for a certificate, diploma, or degree;
  • mandatory computer service fees;
  • academic fees;
  • the cost of any books that are included in the total fees for a correspondence course taken through a post secondary educational institution in Canada; and
  • fees, such as athletic and health services fees, paid to a university, college, or other educational institution in addition to your tuition for post-secondary courses, when such fees are required to be paid by all students. The amount of eligible fees is limited to $250 if the fees do not have to be paid by all students.

If the student does not need the education amount to bring their taxes to 0. It can be transferred to a spouse, common law, or parent and grand parent.
And the student may claim moving expenses each semester if they actual move.
If they get a T4A for bursary, anything over $300 is taxable unless  THEY have a T2202 proving they went on to post education, then up to $5000 is a tax free.
Or it can stay in the students account and be applied against future taxes.
The amounts for moving are a real benefit if you are moving to work.Again there are so many deductions  must first determine if you qualify to deduct moving expenses, either as an individual who is employed or self-employed or as a full-time student.
If you qualify, you can claim reasonable amounts that you paid for moving yourself, your family, and your household effects. Not all members of your household have to travel together or at the same time.

Eligible moving expenses

Transportation and storage costs (such as packing, hauling, moving, in-transit storage, and insurance) for household effects, including items such as boats and trailers.
Travel expenses, including vehicle expenses, meals, and accommodation, to move you and members of your household to your new residence. You can choose to claim vehicle and meal expenses using the detailed or simplified method.
Temporary living expenses for up to a maximum of 15 days for meals and temporary accommodation near the old and the new residence for you and the members of your household. You can choose to claim meal expenses using the detailed or simplifiedmethod. If you choose the simplified method, although you do not have to submit detailed receipts for actual expenses, we may still ask you to provide some documentation to establish the duration of temporary lodging.
Cost of cancelling a lease for your old residence, except any rental payment for the period during which you occupied the residence.
Incidental costs related to your move which includes the following:
  • changing your address on legal documents;
  • replacing driving licences and non-commercial vehicle permits (not including insurance); and
  • utility hook-ups and disconnections.
Cost to maintain your old residence (maximum of $5,000) when it was vacant after you moved, and during a period when reasonable efforts were made to sell the home. It includes the following:
  • interest;
  • property taxes;
  • insurance premiums; and
  • heat and utilities expenses.
NoteThe costs must have been incurred when your old residence was not ordinarily occupied by you or any other person who ordinarily resided with you at the old residence just before the move. You cannot deduct these costs during a period when the old residence was rented.
Cost of selling your old residence, including advertising, notary or legal fees, real estate commission, and mortgage penalty when the mortgage is paid off before maturity.
Cost of purchasing your new residence if you or your spouse or common-law partner sold your old residence as a result of your move.
NoteIt includes legal or notary fees that you paid for the purchase of your new residence, as well as any taxes paid (other than GST/HST or property taxes) for the transfer or registration of title to the new residence.

Then there are accounting fees, safety deposit box fees if you keep stocks and bond, accounting fees if you have stocks or bonds. So you brick shares, or a $100 CSB in your safety deposit box, tax prep so you win all ways.

Now do you really think you can find all little bits and pieces in a $29 program?
Or do you want someone with over 24 years of experience?
This is what you can get from a professional:

Basic tax preparation is priced at $45 and includes:

• T4's
• T5's
• T4(P)
• T(OAP)
• Charitable Donation
• Medical Expenses
• Child care
• GST Application 
• E-filed

For a Spouse living in the same household, the price is $35 and includes the same items as above, however we will evaluate how the couple benefit from the deductions that are allowed to be shared or claimed by one of the couple. This included pension income splitting for Seniors. Both returns are E-filed

For a Child in the same household or at Post Secondary School we do the same basic service plus transfer of education amounts to a parent, bus fare, tuition and tuition intest pay back, education 
refund credit, the fee will be $25

We do rentals and small business at a cost of $15 extra for each rental or business. This applies only if the total are prepared. If accounting or partial accounting is required, we charge $35 an hour.

We also claim appropriate: meal allowances, room and lodging and Northern living allowace

Hope we hear from you

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