The underground economy—it's simply not worth it!

Did you know?

If you've ever paid for services without documentation, such as renovations on your house, taken tips from your job and not claimed them on your income tax and benefit return, chances are you've participated in the underground economy. Unreported or under-reported income is cheating.

Things to remember

  • The underground economy hurts everyone. It has negative impacts on businesses, consumers, and the Canadian tax base. It undermines the competitiveness of businesses that follow the law. Do your research and invest your hard-earned money into honest businesses that meet their tax obligations.
  • Your tax dollars fund everything. Your taxes at all levels of government contribute to a wide range of social benefits that we all enjoy, like roads, hospitals, and job assistance. Find out more on where your federal tax dollars go, here: Where your tax dollars go.
  • You may be at risk. Did you know that hiring a company that works “under the table” can put you at risk? If you paid in cash and there is no written contract or receipt to support a claim, there is nothing you can do regarding poor workmanship and inferior materials, or if a worker gets hurt while working on your property. Protect yourself—get it in writing.
  • You can correct a past mistake. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) offers a second chance to make things right through its Voluntary Disclosures Program. If you make a full disclosure before the CRA starts any compliance action, you may only have to pay the taxes owing and interest, but not any penalties. For more information, visit

CRA online services make filing easier and getting your refund faster

CRA online services are fast, easy, and secure. You can use them to file your income tax and benefit return, make a payment, track your refund, receive your notice of assessment, and more. Did you know that the Government of Canada is switching to direct deposit for payments that it issues? This includes your tax refund and benefits payments. Sign up for direct deposit today! For more information, go to


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