What students need to know this tax season

January 20, 2022

Ottawa, Ontario

Canada Revenue Agency

As a student, you may have many questions about taxes and might be filing an income tax and benefit return for the first time. We understand that many students have unique personal and financial situations, especially given the last year. Let’s make sure you don’t miss out on benefits and credits to which you may be entitled. Find out what you could get and what you need to know in this tax tip.

Filing deadline for most individuals is April 30, 2022

Since April 30, 2022, falls on a Saturday, your income tax and benefit return will be considered filed on time in either of the following situations:

You have until June 15, 2022, to file your tax return if you or your spouse or common law-partner are self-employed.

The payment deadline is April 30, 2022

If you have a balance owing, your payment is due on April 30, 2022.

If you or your spouse or common law-partner are self-employed, your payment is still due on April 30, 2022.

Since April 30, 2022, falls on a Saturday, in both of the above situations, your payment will be considered paid on time if we receive it, or it is processed at a Canadian financial institution, on or before May 2, 2022.

If you filed your 2020 income tax and benefit return and qualified for interest relief, you have until April 30, 2022, to pay any outstanding income tax debt for the 2020 tax year to avoid future interest charges. This applies to the tax owing for the 2020 tax year only, and not for any previous tax year.

We encourage you to file your taxes on time. Doing so will ensure your benefit and credit payments are not interrupted. Even if you owe tax, don’t risk having your benefits interrupted by not filing. If you cannot pay your balance owing, we can work with you on a payment arrangement.

Learn about your taxes

This year, we are launching a new online learning tool to help students learn about taxes and empower them to do their taxes on their own. The free online learning tool provides you with lessons that help you understand what taxes are, why we pay them, how to read your pay stubs and income tax slips, and finally, how to do your taxes. Following each lesson, you can test yourself with exercises and quizzes. For more information, go to Learn about your taxes.

Be prepared

Get your refund faster and avoid delays. Sign up for direct deposit, and make sure you file online and on time.

Our service standard is to issue your notice of assessment (NOA) within two weeks of receiving your return online. Due to COVID-19 delays, the CRA may take 10 to 12 weeks to process paper returns. The CRA will process them in the order they are received. Canadians who file online and who are signed up for direct deposit may get their refund in as little as eight business days.

Learn about online filing and deadlines, as well as other helpful links with our Get ready to do your taxes and Learn about your taxes pages.

COVID-19 benefits

If you received benefits issued by the CRA in 2021, such as the Canada Recovery Benefit, a T4A information slip will be mailed to you by the end of February 2022. Residents of Quebec will receive a T4A information slip and an RL-1 slip.

T4A information slips from the Government of Canada for COVID-19-related benefits will also be provided online if you’re registered for My Account and have full access. To have full access to My Account, you need to enter the CRA security code we issued to you after completing the first step of the registration process.

T4A information slips, including information for COVID-19-related benefits, are also available through the Auto-fill my return service in certified tax filing software. This is because this service automatically fills in parts of an income tax and benefit return with information that the CRA has on file. To use the service, you must be registered for My Account.

When COVID-19 benefits were paid, some tax was withheld at source. If you end up owing more tax on top of that, we understand that payment could present significant financial hardship. In that case, our expanded payment arrangements could work for you. This will give you more time and flexibility to repay based on your financial situation. Also, taxpayer relief is available if you can’t meet your tax obligations because of circumstances beyond your control. The CRA may cancel or waive penalties or interest under certain conditions.

The government introduced proposed measures in the 2021 Fall Economic Statement to provide partial debt relief to students who received, but were not eligible for, the Canada Emergency Response Benefit (CERB) or the Employment Insurance Emergency Response Benefit (EI-ERB). Details will be provided as more information becomes available. No action is required at this time.

There may be other effects to filing your return that are specific to a COVID-19 benefit you received or if you’re a resident of Quebec.

Take advantage of our digital services!

Sign up for My Account to easily manage your tax and benefit affairs online. You can use My Account to quickly change your address and direct deposit information. You can also track your refund, view your return status, make a payment, sign up for email notifications, and more.

Quickly see if you have any uncashed cheques from us

Select “Uncashed cheques” in My Account under related services. If you have an uncashed cheque, ask us for a duplicate payment by selecting and completing the displayed form. Send us the form using the “Submit documents” digital service.

Get free tax help

If you have a modest income and a simple tax situation, volunteers at a free tax clinic may be able to file your return for you. Free tax clinics are available in person and virtually. To find out if you’re eligible, and to find a tax clinic, go to our Free tax clinics page.

You can also quickly and securely file your return online. We have a list of certified tax software products that are easy to use, fast, and secure. Some of which are free! When you file using a NETFILE-certified software, you may be able to use:

Save money at tax time

Here are some benefits and credits you may be entitled to that could save you money at tax time:

You may be able to claim credits and other expenses

If you owe money this year, you may be able to claim certain non-refundable tax credits. If you are eligible to claim them, non-refundable tax credits lower the taxes that you owe at tax time. For example, you may be able to claim the:

Protecting you from scams and fraud

The safety and security of Canadians and their information is a priority for the CRA. Being a victim of scams, fraud, or identity theft can result in significant financial and emotional effects.

Know when and how we might contact you. The Be Scam Smart page provides information on the ways in which we may contact you, including by:

We also provide information on securing CRA accounts and encourage you to:

More ways to find answers to your questions

To learn more about the benefits of filing, go to our Students page. You can also check out our questions and answers about filing your taxes page for more answers to common questions. This page will be updated periodically to incorporate changes that may affect you during the tax-filing season.

If you need a quick answer to a question, you can use Charlie, our friendly chatbot. Charlie will help you find the information you need to file your income tax and benefit return! You can find Charlie on the CRA home page and many of our other web pages on Canada.ca.


Media Relations
Canada Revenue Agency

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