Here’s a Handy Checklist to Help You Do Your TaxesBrian Jang ON February 13, 2019
Getting prepared to do your taxes may be stressful for some, as they run through the list of everything they need for the third or fourth time, checking that they haven’t accidentally misplaced documents or simply forgotten to include something. After all, no one wants to miss out on any potential refund that they could be owed simply because they didn’t include the necessary documents.
Overlooking some details can become quite easy, especially as your tax situation becomes more complex. Marriage, kids, running your own business? They can all confuse the process, making it more likely that you will miss something, create issues for yourself, and cause a delay in your return.
When going on vacation, you will often make a list of everything that you need to bring, so why not do the same for your taxes? A checklist of everything you need to include can help ensure that you don’t miss anything, completing your return quickly and efficiently.
In most cases, there should be no major changes to your basic information, but if you have moved, or had a change in your marital status in the time since your last return, you’ll need to ensure that your information is up-to-date with the CRA. If you are a CRA MyAccount holder, you will be able to update this information online, while other changes, including changing your first and last names will require that you contact the CRA directly.
Here are times that you will need to have:
- The date of birth for every family member
- Social Insurance numbers. You will need these for yourself, your spouse, and any applicable dependents
- Your net income, as well as that of your spouse and any dependants for whom you are claiming credits
- When accepting a tuition transfer, you must have a copy of the student’s return
- The amount of any instalment payments you’ve made to the CRA
Do you have any unused losses or credits that you plan to apply, or CCA (Capital Cost Allowance) benefits? Have your last return and notice of assessment handy?
Checklist for Income
You will need the following T Slips:
- *T3, Statement of Trust Income Allocations and Designations.
- *T4, Statement of Remuneration Paid
- *T4A, Statement of Pension, Retirement, Annuity, and Other Income.
- *T4A(OAS), Statement of Old Age Security
- *T4A(P), Statement of Canada Pension Plan Benefits
- *T4E, Statement of Employment Insurance and Other Benefits
- *T4RSP, Statement of RRSP Income
- *T5007, Statement of Benefits
- *T5013, Statement of Partnership Income
- *T5013A, Statement of Partnership Income for Tax Shelters and Renounced Resource Expenses
- *RC210, Working Income Tax Benefit Advance Payments Statement
Checklist for Other Income
You may have other income to declare. Do not forget to include the following, if applicable:
- Capital Gains including the sale of your principal residence
- Self-employment income including fishing, farming, small businesses, freelance work, and contractors
- Support payments received
- Rental income
- Tips and gratuities
Checklist for Deductions
- Receipts for childcare expenses
- Moving expenses
- Union dues that are not included on your T4 slip
- *RRSP contributions, Home Buyers’ Plan, and Lifelong Learning Plan repayment amounts
- Form T2200 (completed by your employer) to claim employment expenses
- Amounts for carrying charges and interest expenses related to your investments. This includes fees related to managing your investments
- Support payments made
- *Unused losses
Checklist for Expenses & Credits
- Home accessibility expenses
- Medical expenses. If you’re claiming any medical expenses for other dependant family members (other than you, your spouse, and your minor children), the dependant’s net income is required
- Student loan interest amounts
- Tuition slips (T2202A, TL11A, TL11B, Tl11C)
- Tuition amounts received via transfer. You’ll need a few numbers from the transfer’s return
- *Unused tuition, education and textbook amounts from previous years
- Adoption expenses
- Personal attendant care expenses
- Charitable donations
- Receipts for classroom/school supplies (teachers and early childhood educators)
Depending on your province of residence, you may also need a few other amounts for certain provincial credits such as:
- Rent receipts
- Property tax amounts
- RL Slips (Quebec)
- Seniors’ activity receipts
* If you’re a CRA MyAccount holder, you can import these items directly into your return using CRA’s Auto-fill my return service.
By making use of a checklist to track everything you need, you can relax knowing that you haven’t missed anything, or set yourself up for any issues with your return.
- Who Can Claim Moving Expenses?
- What are the Implications of Being Declared a Personal Services Business?
- How to Charge Provincial Sales Taxes on Online Sales
- Why You Should Rethink Your Accounting Strategy
- What Can Happen If You Submit Your Taxes After the Deadline?