Time running out before the tax deadline? 5 tax tips to consider in the last-minute crunch

CNW Group

CIBC offers expert tax tips Canadians should consider before filing their taxes

TORONTO , April 28, 2014 /CNW/ - CIBC (CM.TO) (CM) - With tax-filing mistakes typically costing Canadians more than $1 billion in extra taxes, Jamie Golombek , Managing Director, Tax and Estate Planning at CIBC, offers five tips to consider before the extended May 5 deadline.

"Preparing taxes can be overwhelming for many Canadians, and pressure is added as the filing deadline draws closer," says Mr. Golombek. "Crunch time often means errors and oversights which can easily be avoided."

Here are five tips Canadians can review before filing their taxes:

1. Pay on time

If you were unable to file your 2013 income tax return on time due to temporary service interruptions related to the Heartbleed bug, you have until midnight on May 5, 2014 to file your return and pay the balance owing to avoid late-filing penalties and interest charges. If you are self-employed, you (and your spouse or partner) have until midnight on June 16, 2014 to file your 2013 returns, and you must pay any balance owing no later than May 5, 2014 .

2. Pay online or through pre-authorized debit

If you have a balance owing, instead of mailing a cheque, you can make a payment to the CRA by visiting your bank in person or through online banking. This year, the CRA has introduced a new pre-authorized debit option (PAD) that authorizes the CRA to withdraw a pre-determined payment amount directly from your bank account, either on a one-time or recurring basis, to pay your taxes.

3. Make sure the CRA has your most recent address and banking information

If you're starting a new direct deposit request or changing bank information that's already on file with the CRA, it's easy to do on your tax return. However, you can also use the My Account service at the CRA website to submit your change request. Don't forget to leave your old bank account open until payments start being deposited to your new account.

4. Double check that you've included all income from all sources

To avoid penalties for under-reporting income, make sure you've included all your income. Check for missing income by comparing 2013 tax slips and income to prior years, and amounts on 2013 tax slips to other documents such as investment statements. And, check if a tax deduction or credit is allowed before making a claim.

5. If you're getting a refund, start thinking about your investment plans

A lot of effort goes into preparing taxes, but many Canadians don't take the time to think about what they're going to do with their refund. Often it just gets "parked" in chequing or savings accounts. If you're planning to invest your refund longer term, speak with your financial advisor about your investment options.

"These tips will help Canadian taxpayers file their 2013 tax return efficiently, without unnecessary costs - and with more peace of mind," says Mr. Golombek.

To view Mr. Golombek's tax planning reports, please visit: www.cibc.com/ca/advice-centre.

About CIBC

CIBC is a leading North American financial institution with nearly 11 million personal banking and business clients. CIBC offers a full range of products and services through its comprehensive electronic banking network, branches and offices across Canada , and has offices in the United States and around the world. You can find other news releases and information about CIBC in our Media Centre on our corporate website at www.cibc.com.

SOURCE Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce

Contact:


Caroline Van Hasselt, Director, External Communications, 416-784-6699 or  caroline.vanhasselt@cibc.com

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