The mandate of the Ombudsman shall be to assist, advise and inform the Minister about any matter relating to services provided to a taxpayer by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).
How does the Taxpayers' Ombudsman fulfill the mandate?
The Taxpayers' Ombudsman fulfills the mandate by upholding taxpayer service rights and providing an independent and impartial review of unresolved complaints from taxpayers about the service or treatment they have received from the CRA. The Ombudsman also makes recommendations directly to the Minister of National Revenue to correct any systemic service and fairness problems we discover at the CRA. Another important part of the role is raise awareness of taxpayer service rights and the role of the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman (OTO).
What are taxpayer service rights?
As a taxpayer, you have eight service rights, outlined in the Taxpayer Bill of Rights, which govern your relationship with the CRA. The eight service rights include:
- the right to be treated professionally, courteously, and fairly (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 5);
- the right to complete, accurate, clear, and timely information from the CRA (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 6);
- the right to lodge a service complaint and to be provided with an explanation of the CRA findings (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 9);
- the right to have the costs of compliance taken into account when tax legislation is administered (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 10);
- the right to expect the CRA to be accountable (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 11);
- the right to expect the CRA to publish service standards and report annually (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 13);
- the right to expect the CRA to warn you about questionable tax schemes in a timely manner (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 14);
- the right to be represented by a person of your choice (Taxpayer Bill of Rights, Article 15).
The Taxpayers' Ombudsman is responsible for ensuring that the CRA respects those rights in its dealings with taxpayers.
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