Keeping records

You have to keep records for each year you claim expenses. These records must include all of the following:

  • a daily record of your expenses, together with your receipts and any cancelled cheques
  • any ticket stubs for travel
  • invoices
  • any monthly credit card statements
  • a record of each motor vehicle you used for employment. This record must show both the total kilometres you drove and the kilometres you drove for employment purposes in the year

Your receipts for the purchase of merchandise or services have to show the following:

  • the date you made the purchase
  • the name and address of the seller or supplier
  • your name and address
  • a full description of the goods or services you bought
  • information regarding the GST/HST you paid on your expenses, or the rate of tax if you are claiming the GST/HST rebate for employees

Keep a record of the motor vehicles or musical instruments you bought and sold because you may be able to claim capital cost allowance. This record has to show who sold you the motor vehicle or musical instrument, the cost, and the date you bought it.

If you sell or trade a motor vehicle or musical instrument, show the date you sold or traded it on your bill of sale. Also, show the amount you received from the sale or trade-in.

Do not send in your records or receipts with your return, but keep them in case the CRA asks to see them. If you do not keep the necessary information, the CRA may reduce your claim.

Generally, you have to keep your records (whether paper or electronic) for at least 6 years from the end of the tax year to which they apply. If you want to destroy your records before the 6-year period is over, you must first get written permission from the director of your tax services office. To do this, either use Form T137, Request for Destruction of Records, or make your own written request. For more information, see IC78-10, Books and Records Retention/Destruction.

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