Notice of assessment: Understand your NOA

From: Canada Revenue Agency

Your notice of assessment (NOA) is an evaluation of your tax return that the Canada Revenue Agency sends you every year after you file your tax return.

Your NOA includes the date we checked your tax return, and the details about how much you may owe, or get as a refund or credit.

The NOA also gives your Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) deduction limit for that year.

Your NOA is an important document. Keep it with your tax records.

Sections of your notice of assessment (NOA)

Your notice contains your:

  • Account summary

    This section shows you the result of your assessed or reassessed tax return. This may be a refund, a zero balance, or a balance owing. The amount we show includes any outstanding balances you may owe from previous returns.

    The account summary may also show the result from concurrent assessments or reassessments.

    Concurrent assessments and reassessments

    When you file several consecutive-year returns at the same time (for example, you file your 2015, 2016, and 2017 returns together), we do a concurrent assessment. We assess all your returns at the same time. The result appears in the account summary on the last notice of the series.

    When you send us new information that changes your returns for several consecutive years, we do a concurrent reassessment.

  • Tax assessment summary

    This section lists the main lines on your assessed tax return. Next to each line are the amounts we used to calculate your balance.

    Compare these amounts to the ones on your return to see where we made changes, if any.

    This section also shows any penalty and interest we calculated on your refund or amount owing. If you have a balance owing from a previous assessment, it will also appear here.

  • Explanation of changes and other important information

    This section explains in detail the changes or corrections we made to your tax return.

    These changes are based on the information sent with your return and the information we have on file.

    If you have new or additional information you want to send us to change your return, see How to change your return.

    If you disagree with your assessment or reassessment, and want to register a formal dispute, see Complaints and disputes. You have 90 days from the date of the notice to register your dispute.

  • RRSP deduction limit statement

    This statement shows your deduction limit for your Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP).

    Deduction limit

    Your deduction limit is the amount of RRSP contributions you can deduct for the next year.

    Your statement also shows how we calculate your deduction limit, which is based on information you sent us with your previous tax return and information we have on file.

    Available Contribution Room

    The last line of the statement gives your available contribution room. This is the maximum amount you can contribute for next year.

    It is your deduction limit minus any unused RRSP contributions you reported in past years. Your unused contributions appear on your statement.

    If the total RRSP contributions (current and unused) that you claim on your return are less than your deduction limit, you have available contribution room.

    Excess Contribution

    If your RRSP contributions are more than your deduction limit, you have an excess of contributions. You may have to pay tax on this amount.

    For more information on RRSP contribution and deduction rules, see How contributions affect your RRSP deduction limit.

Your notice may also contain your:

  • Home Buyers' Plan statement

    If you participate in the Home Buyers’ Plan (HBP), you will see your HBP statement on your notice of assessment or reassessment.

    It shows your remaining balance to repay, and your minimum required repayment for the next year.

    Your minimum required repayment is a portion of the balance you have left to repay. If you pay less than the minimum amount, you will have to include the difference as RRSP income on your return.

    For more information about the HBP, see What is the Home Buyers' Plan?

  • Lifelong Learning Plan statement

    If you participate in the Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP), you will see your LLP statement on your notice of assessment or reassessment.

    It shows the balance left to repay, and the minimum required repayment for the next year.

    Your minimum required repayment is a portion of the balance you have left to repay. If you pay less than the minimum amount, you will have to include the difference as RRSP income on your return.

    For more information on the LLP works, see Lifelong Learning Plan (LLP).

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