Like many taxpayers in Vancouver and Calgary today, you may feel overwhelmed when tax season arrives. There is much involved with the filing process alone, not to mention putting forth the effort to minimize your taxes while maximizing the return.
Whether you are a working professional, operate your own business, or are too busy with other areas of life to file your own taxes, you are not alone. Below are four areas to consider when searching for a qualified accountant.
Planning ahead for tax season
The first step in filing your personal tax return is being prepared before the season arrives. This means filing receipts in an organized manner and ensuring all necessary paperwork is available and accessible well ahead of time. An advisor can suggest tips for keeping organized throughout the year.
From here, a professional accountant will ensure that you are on track for a maximized return. Are you deducting all possible medical, child care, donation, and other expenses? Do you qualify for any credits, such as for home renovation? Answering these questions and others will lead to the best possible return.
Assisting self-employed business owners
Business owners know that filing a personal tax return when you are self-employed can be a complex process. Which personal receipts can be deducted as business expenses? What business items must remain completely separate from your personal return?
It is crucial to have an understanding of these laws, not only avoid penalties when filing, but also to take advantage of as many tax credits as possible. A qualified advisor will make sense of these two areas, and help you to plan ahead and organize for next season.
Transitioning into retirement
Canada’s income tax landscape is constantly shifting, and this includes the parameters surrounding retirement. Planning well ahead of time for how best to take advantage of your RRSPs, pension plans, and other investment is worth the effort.
Succession planning is also necessary if you own your own business. No matter the size of the company, stepping away requires more time and planning than one may imagine. It is recommended to meet with a qualified business advisor about this subject, even if you are not yet ready to retire.
Communicating with the CRA
An established accountant not only fully understands Canadian tax laws, but is also well-versed in working with the CRA. This level of communication is only obtained through years of experience and through a strong background in accounting.
In the event of an audit, or should you be in the position of filing your return late,having a professional advisor on your side can make all the difference when communicating with the government.