OTTAWA (NC) — Many of us put off tax filing every year and allow the deadline to sneak up on us. Maybe it’s because we’re extra busy or not sure how to do them. But, no matter how much you like or dislike the process, it makes a difference to file your taxes on time.
This year, since April 30, 2023, falls on a Sunday, your tax return will be considered filed on time as long as it’s received or postmarked on or before May 1.
Here are three of the top reasons to file on time:
Get your refund earlier
If you file your tax return online, it generally takes up to two weeks for it to be processed. If you’re owed a refund, you could see the money in your bank account in as soon as eight business days if you filed online and are registered for direct deposit.
Avoid penalties and interest charges
Another crucial reason to do your taxes on time is to avoid owing penalties and interest charges to the government. If you file after the deadline and must pay taxes, you’ll face a penalty of five per cent of what you owe plus one per cent for each month you’re late.
Even if you can’t afford to pay the taxes you owe, you should still file on time to avoid the late-filing penalty.
Access benefits and credits
Whether or not you earned income this year, you may be eligible for certain benefits and credits, like the Climate action incentive payment, known as the CAIP.
It’s available to eligible residents of Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba and Ontario to offset the cost of the federal price on pollution. It’s paid out in four installments throughout the year, but to receive them you must file your tax return.
If you file it after the deadline, you could see delays or pauses in this and other payments you may be eligible for, such as the Canada child benefit.
If you’re a resident of Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia or Prince Edward Island, you may be eligible for the CAIP later this year. But since the federal fuel charge will only begin in those provinces on July 1, 2023, the April 2023 payment will not apply to them.
Find more information at canada.ca/cai-payment.