While the April 30, 2021 deadline for individuals to file their 2020 tax return has come and gone, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) would like to remind Canadians that it’s still possible to file a return, and that there are several good reasons to do so.
- You may be eligible for a refund. This is only available by filing.
- You may be eligible for benefits or credits payments. Filing a tax return will ensure that the CRA is using the most accurate information to calculate benefit and credit payments. You could be eligible for certain benefit and credit payments, such as the Goods and Services Tax/Harmonized Sales Tax (GST/HST) credit, the Canada child benefit (CCB) or the Guaranteed Income Supplement (GIS). The longer you wait to file, the more likely it is that payments will be interrupted.
- You could be at risk of interrupting your COVID-19 benefits. Filing a tax return reduces the risk of having your COVID-19 recovery benefit payments paused while your eligibility is validated. If you receive COVID-19 recovery benefits such as the Canada Emergency Response Benefit, Canada Emergency Student Benefit, Canada Recovery Benefit, the Canada Recovery Caregiving Benefit, or the Canada Recovery Sickness Benefit, the CRA uses information from both your 2019 and 2020 returns to confirm your eligibility for these benefits.
This year, more than ever due to COVID-19, the CRA understands that individuals may find it difficult to meet their financial obligations, including filing and paying tax debts. The CRA is committed to helping them resolve these issues so they receive the benefits that come with filing a return.
The CRA recognizes that certain individuals have faced unique challenges this filing season, and the CRA will work with them to address situations on a case-by-case basis. If individuals cannot pay an existing debt in full, they may be able to make a payment arrangement, and if individuals are unable to meet their tax obligations due to circumstances beyond their control, they may also request the cancellation of penalties and interest charged to their account.
The importance of filing a return cannot be overstated, and individuals should know that it is still possible to do so. With these and other measures the CRA has put in place, those who have not filed a return yet should be able to do so quickly and easily. The CRA is here to help.