Risky Business

This document is also available in PDF format (PDF, 81 KB).

Paying "under the table" costs more than you think!

Too good to be true? Some people think any deal is a good deal. Pay under the table – get the job done quick – no receipt! That deal makes you part of Canada's underground economy – and you could be paying more than you think.

What is the Underground Economy?

For some people, it brings to mind things like drugs, contraband cigarettes, fraud and other illegal activities. But the underground economy goes beyond what some may consider ‘big crime'.

The Canada Revenue Agency defines the underground economy as any financial transaction that isn't officially declared or recorded.

Health care, policing, education, childcare and pensions are just some of the programs and services delivered through your tax dollars. The underground economy takes money away from these programs. Small and medium-sized businesses also suffer, placing them in competition with those who choose unfair, sometimes illegal business practices.

The Canada Revenue Agency is committed to combating the underground economy through identification, audit and enforcement programs.

Together with our provincial and territorial partners, we are working with Canadians to combat the underground economy and promote fair and legitimate business practices that strengthen our economy and protect homeowners from personal and financial risk.

The fact is, paying under the table is no deal – it can put consumers in some very risky situations.

If you pay under the table for home repairs or renovations, you have no warranty, no recourse for poor workmanship and no liability insurance if an injury takes place on your property.

Before you hire anyone, make sure you are protected. Ask for written contracts and proof of worker's compensation or private liability insurance for injury or damages to your home. Protect yourself...

Get it in Writing!

Report a problem or mistake on this page
Please select all that apply:

Thank you for your help!

You will not receive a reply. For enquiries, contact us.

Date modified: