How to file information returns

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Which method to use based on your information return type

T4 returns
T4A returns
T4A-NR returns
T5018 returns
You must file electronically if you have more than the following number of information returns of the same type for a calendar year:
  • Returns filed before January 1, 2024

    more than 50 slips

  • New Returns filed on or after January 1, 2024

    more than 5 slips

T1204 returns
You must file electronically
T4A-RCA returns
You must file by paper

What are the types of filing methods

 Electronic filing

Where possible, you should file returns electronically to avoid the delays that may occur in processing paper returns.

  • Web Forms: Option 1

    Web Forms allows you to complete an information return easily, following step-by-step instructions

    Benefits to using Web Forms
    • You can file up to 100 slips (original, additional, amended, or cancelled) from our website. If you want to file additional slips, file them as original slips
    • Create an electronic information return containing slips and a summary, which can be saved and imported at a later date
    • Summary totals are calculated for you
    • Allows you to print your slips and your summary
    • The application validates data in real time
  • Internet file transfer: Option 2

    Internet file transfer allows you to use payroll, commercial, or in-house developed software, to submit an xml file of up to 150 MB over the Internet

Learn more: Filing information returns electronically.

 Paper filing

The CRA encourages you to file your returns electronically. However, if you do not have to file electronically, you can file on paper.

 By paper

If you file a paper return:

  • You must fill out one copy of each slip for each employee or recipient and include it with your summary when you file
  • Enter the information for two different employees or recipients on one sheet
  • Mail the return to the address provided on the summary
  • Keep a copy of the slips and summary in your records

Get a PDF or PDF fillable/saveable slip

You can get slips in a PDF or PDF fillable/saveable format to file on paper. You can make photocopies of the completed slips to distribute to your employees.

Get PDF slips: Canada Revenue Agency forms listed by number.

What to do if you are sending a large quantity

The CRA accepts alternate versions of the slip if you are sending a large quantity.

Learn more: Customized forms.

What happens if you have more than one payroll account

If you have more than one payroll account, you have to file a separate return for each account.

What happens if you file a summary without slips

If a summary is sent without the slips, the following applies:

  • The CRA will consider the return as not received
  • The summary will not be returned to you
  • A complete return must be filed including the slips

What happens if you file using the wrong method

If you are required to file electronically and you do not file the returns by Internet file transfer or Web Forms, you may have to pay a penalty as determined in the table below.

Each slip is an information return, and the penalty the CRA assesses is based on the number of information returns filed in an incorrect format. The penalty is calculated per type of information return. For example, if you file 6 T4A-NR slips and 6 T4 slips on paper, the CRA would assess 2 penalties of $125, 1 per type of information return.

Types of information returns
Penalty based on the number of information returns (slips)
Number of information returns (slips) by type Penalty
6 to 50 Returns filed on or after January 1, 2024 $125
51 to 250
251 to 500 $500
501 to 2,500 $1,500
2,501 or more $2,500

What to do if you have a business in Quebec

If you have a place of business in Quebec, in addition to filing with the CRA, you may have to file with Revenu Québec.

Learn more: Filing RL slips and the RL-1 summary – Revenu Québec.



ITA 162(7.01)
Late filing penalty – Prescribed information returns
ITA 162(7.02)
Failure to file in appropriate manner – Prescribed information returns
ITA Reg 205.1(1)
Electronic filing

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