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Tax Tips for Newcomers Immigrating to Canada

ON March 27, 2017

filing taxes for the first time


Welcome to Canada! Immigrating to a new country can be an exciting and sometimes overwhelming experience. After all, adjusting to a different culture, living in a new home, and possibly even learning a new language can add to the stress of adapting to a new environment. And if that wasn’t enough, new residents also have to deal with filing taxes for the first time. If you’re a newcomer to Canada, you might need a little help when it comes to tax time. Here are some tax tips we hope will help make your transition to this wonderful country a little easier.

About your first tax return

If it is your first time doing taxes, there are a few things you’ll need to know. For starters, all new residents of Canada have to file a tax return. Even if you’ve temporarily stayed in Canada for 183 days or more in any calendar year, you may have to file a return. Keep in mind that you’ll also need to report any income you made (i.e. salary, business, rental income, etc.) no matter which country you’ve immigrated from.

Moving expenses

You might have heard that you can write off your moving expenses. Well, that is only partially true. It really only applies to residents relocating for a new job or education within Canada. For example, if your new residence is at least 40 km closer to your school or place of business than your previous home, you can claim some of your moving expenses, including transportation, cost of cancelling your old lease, storage of your household items, and temporary living expenses. Unfortunately for newcomers coming to Canada, you can’t claim moving expenses coming in and out of the country.

What you’ll need for your first time doing taxes

Before you file your return, you’ll need your social insurance number (SIN). Then you’ll have to provide some basic personal information, including your full name and address, as well as the details of any dependents you may have. You’ll also have to declare any income you made inside (if applicable) and outside of Canada from the previous year. If you are currently employed in Canada, your employer will give you a T-Slip— Canadian income tax forms used to report employment income to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

File your first tax return with a chartered professional accountant

As a newcomer to Canada, filing your taxes for the first time can be a little intimidating. Tax laws are constantly changing, making it a challenge to understand tax benefits, credits, and deductions. Here at BCJ Group, Chartered Professional Accountants, we have the experience to help you with all your immigrant tax concerns.

For a free consultation, contact us today!

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