Are you self-employed? The Canada Revenue Agency can help you understand your tax obligations
April 12, 2023
Canada Revenue Agency
If you're self-employed, we understand that navigating your tax obligations may seem complicated. But don't worry! The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is focused on supporting you. To get ready for tax-filing season, we've put together helpful tips and information for self-employed individuals.
The 2022 tax-filing deadline for self-employed individuals is June 15, 2023
We encourage Canadians to file their taxes as soon as possible, not only this year but every year. You have until June 15, 2023, to file your 2022 tax return if you or your spouse or common-law partner are self-employed.
The 2022 payment deadline is April 30, 2023
Although your 2022 tax-filing deadline is June 15, 2023, your payment is still due on April 30, 2023. Since April 30, 2023, falls on a Sunday, 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 1, 2023.
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 agreement. Payment agreement options have been expanded to reflect current realities. The Payment Arrangement Calculator has also been added to My Account and My Business Account. This self-service tool allows you to submit a payment agreement without having to contact the CRA. If the proposed payment agreement does not meet the CRA payment policy, a CRA officer will contact you to complete an acceptable arrangement.
Liaison Officer service
We offer a free Liaison Officer service to owners of small businesses and self-employed individuals to help you understand your business tax obligations. A visit from a Liaison Officer is 100% confidential; the information you choose to discuss with a Liaison Officer will not be shared with other areas of the CRA, or anyone else.
You can request a visit by phone or videoconference here.
The Gig Economy
The gig economy is based on temporary and freelance work, or short-term contracts facilitated online through third-party websites or applications (apps). As a gig worker, your contract services may range from a small task to a highly specialized service. If you are connecting with clients through online platforms or applications such as Clickworker, Crowdsource, Fiverr, UberEats or Skip the Dishes to provide them with your services, you may be considered to be self-employed instead of an employee for tax purposes. Your work may be carried out anywhere, as online platforms can connect businesses and independent contractors from all over the world. If you are unsure of whether you are an employee or self-employed, please visit Employee or Self-Employed?.
You can find more information about filing taxes as a gig worker in our gig economy tax tip.
You can find even more information on this topic at Taxes and the platform economy.
Online tools to help you file
Using the CRA’s digital services is the fastest and easiest way to view and manage your tax and benefit information. The CRA also encourages you to sign up for My Account and My Business Account ahead of time, and gather all your information for filing your return.
The CRA’s Get ready to do your taxes page has information on online filing, deadlines, and other helpful links.
If you need to make a payment to the CRA, there are online options that are faster, easier, and more secure than mailing a cheque.
There are many ways to make a payment:
- using your financial institution's online banking, mobile app, or telephone service
- using the CRA's pre-authorized debit service offered through My Account and the MyCRA mobile web app, which lets you:
- set up payment(s) to the CRA from a chequing account on pre-set date(s)
- pay an amount due, repay overpaid amounts, or make instalment payments
- through the CRA's My Payment service, which lets you make payments online directly to the CRA (does not include credit cards). You can use this service if you have an activated debit card from a participating Canadian financial institution with one or more of the following logos: Visa® Debit, Debit MasterCard® or Interac®
- by credit card, PayPal or Interac e-Transfer through a third-party service provider for a fee
If you still wish to make a payment in person, you can pay:
- at any Canada Post outlet, for a fee, using cash or a debit card, along with a QR code that you can generate using My Account, the MyCRA mobile web app, or directly through the third-party service provider, PaySimply, that Canada Post uses to process the QR codes
- at your Canadian financial institution with a remittance voucher
To see all the payment options, go to our Payments to the CRA page.
Before filing your tax return, make sure you are aware of the benefits, credits and requirements that apply to you.
To learn more about filing your income tax and benefit returns, check out Taxes and benefits for Indigenous peoples. This page outlines options to make it easier to file a tax return and get your benefits and credits.
Things to keep in mind:
- On your return, you have to enter your income from any business you run yourself or with a partner.
- In Canada, generally a self-employed individual must register for GST/HST if their revenue (along with the revenue of all associated persons) from worldwide taxable supplies is more than $30,000 in one calendar quarter or over the last four consecutive calendar quarters. See Small businesses and self-employed income for more information on this and for situations where this may not be applicable.
- If you own a business or engage in commercial activities, keep thorough records. Your records must have enough information so you can figure out the tax you owe and are able to support your income and expense claims, as well as any deduction or credit you claim. Your records have to be supported by original documents. Electronic versions of these documents are acceptable.
- In case the CRA reviews your return, keep your documents even if you don't have to attach certain supporting documents to your return or you are filing online. The CRA may ask you to prove your claims for deductions or credits with documents like cancelled cheques or bank statements.
- Keep supporting documents and all required records for six years from whichever date is later:
- the end of the tax year to which they relate
- the date your return was filed (if you did not file your return on time)
- If you earn income that has no tax withheld, or does not have enough tax withheld during the year, you might have to pay tax by instalments. This may happen if you:
- have rental, investment, or self-employment income
- receive certain pension payments
- have income from more than one job
- Check to see if you have any uncashed cheques on the overview page in My Account.
For more information, go to our Small businesses and self-employed income page and Employer-employee relationship questions and answers. 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 tax-filing season.
Canada Revenue Agency
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