What’s new for tax professionals and tax preparers this tax-filing season
Here's the important information you need to know about changes for the 2018 tax-filing season:
- Email notifications – In February 2019, CRA is launching an improved email notification service. Once signed up for the service, your clients will receive an email notification when correspondence is available to view in My Account and the MyCRA mobile web app or when there are important changes made to their account, such as an address or direct deposit update. You can help your clients get started with email notifications by entering their email address on the income tax and benefit return you prepare for them through EFILE or on paper. If you have provided your email address in Represent a Client, you will be notified at the same time as your clients when there is mail for you to view. You will only get an email if your client is signed up for email notifications and if you are the current representative.
- ReFILE lets you adjust your client’s returns using tax software – The ReFILE service lets tax professionals and tax preparers send changes to the CRA for their client’s 2018, 2017, 2016 and 2015 returns using EFILE filing software. Tax professionals and tax preparers must make sure their clients have received their notice of assessment before sending a change through ReFILE.
- Mailing a paper 2018 Income tax package to your client - This year, the CRA will mail the new all-in-one 2018 Income tax package to Canadians who paper filed in the previous tax season. If your client does not receive a tax package from the CRA by February 11, 2019, Canadians can find what they need online or order a paper copy from the CRA. An order limit of nine packages per individual will ensure all Canadians have access to what they need this filing season. Please encourage your client to bring their personalized 2018 Income tax package to you.
- Expansion of the Dedicated Telephone Service (DTS) for small and medium income tax service providers – This year, the DTS is available nationally and eligibility for the service has expanded to include more Chartered Professional Accountants (CPAs) and non-CPA income tax service providers such as bookkeepers and tax preparers. By using the free service, you will be able to connect with experienced CRA officers from the Income Tax Rulings Directorate who will be able to help you solve complex tax problems. To register, you are invited to access the DTS registration form on our website.
Changes to credits and deductions
- The Medical expense tax credit has been expanded to allow expenses related to service animals who are specially trained to perform specific tasks for a patient with a severe mental impairment that helps the patient cope with the impairment. Eligible expenses paid in 2018 include the cost of the animal, the care and maintenance of the animal (food and veterinary care), reasonable travel expenses paid for the patient to attend a school, institution, or other facility that trains in the handling of these animals, and reasonable board and lodging expenses paid for the patient’s full-time attendance at a school, institution, or other facility that trains in the handling of such animals.
- The Climate Action Incentive (CAI) payment can be claimed by eligible individuals who are residents of Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario or New Brunswick. A new Schedule 14 will be included with the T1 package for these provinces to allow eligible individuals to claim the CAI payments they are entitled to based on their family composition. A 10% rural CAI supplement is available to residents of small and rural communities who live outside a Census Metropolitan Area (CMA), as defined by Statistics Canada.
Canada Revenue Agency
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