Voluntary Disclosures Program – Introduction
Notice to reader
As of March 1, 2018 changes have been made to the Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) to ensure greater fairness for all Canadians. For more information about the new program, refer to:
- Backgrounder – Voluntary Disclosures Program
- IC00-1R6 – Voluntary Disclosures Program
- GST/HST Memorandum 16-5, Voluntary Disclosures Program
Only applications received on or before February 28, 2018 are eligible to be considered under IC00-1R5.
To avoid processing delays, or the possible return of your application, be sure to submit all relevant returns, forms, schedules, and payment of the estimated taxes owing with a signed form RC199.
A second chance to correct your taxes
The Voluntary Disclosures Program (VDP) gives you a second chance to correct a tax return you previously filed or to file a return that you should have filed. If you file a VDP application and it is accepted by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) you will have to pay the taxes owing, plus interest in part or in full. However, you would be eligible for relief from prosecution and, in some cases, from penalties that you would otherwise be required to pay.
As the majority of Canadians file and pay their taxes in full and on time, it is important that the relief provided under the VDP be fair and not reward individuals or corporations looking for a way to avoid paying their fair share of taxes. To ensure fairness for Canadians, applications for relief from taxpayers who intentionally avoided their tax obligations will not get the same relief as those who want to correct an unintentional error. The CRA will also continue to restrict participation in the VDP if it has already received information on a taxpayer’s (or a related taxpayer’s) potential involvement in tax non-compliance; for example, a leak of offshore financial information, or other information that names the taxpayer.
You can apply to the VDP to correct errors or omissions in your income tax filings through two streams, depending on the type of disclosure you want to make. The income tax stream covers all disclosures related to the Income Tax Act. The GST/HST stream covers all disclosures related the goods and services tax / harmonized sales tax, excise tax, excise duty, the softwood lumber products export charge and the air travellers security charge. To help determine which stream is appropriate for your disclosure, refer to the links below.
If you could not fulfill your tax obligations and requirements due to extraordinary circumstances, actions of the CRA, inability to pay, financial hardship, or other circumstances beyond your control, go to Cancel or waive penalties or interest for information about applying for relief from penalties and interest under the taxpayer relief provisions.
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