Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Taxes Not Yet Done!

Another great night happened. I slept soundly, through most of the night. I did wake once, in the middle of a dream; Gordon was in it. I felt refreshed this morning. Praise God! Thank You, Jesus!

Today, I had another busy day! Not only busy for myself, but also because a friend of mine L, went on a trip to Taiwan, to visit her family; she left on the weekend and will be gone two weeks. I agreed to take over L's work for her while she is away.

Hopefully, I won't be as busy as this throughout the whole time she is away, for I still need to get my taxes done! And, do my bookkeeping for GST! All, before the end of April! I know, you might say I should have gotten it done, sooner. Actually, while I might have gotten my bookkeeping done for the first quarter possibly, I only received some info I needed the other day. I definitely could not have gotten Gordon's and my income taxes done.

A few days ago, I received info from the government that I need to use for my taxes; actually, for Gordon's taxes. But his need to be done, when mine get done.

When Gordon retired three years ago, there was tremendous paperwork to do for his taxes that year. We both thought we had received all the info, T4's, T5's, etc. that were issued. On this basis, we completed his taxes and mine.

Several months later, we were notified that we had not included all T4's and T5's issued for Gordon, so we were being penalized $4,600+. Had adjustments been done on the missing T4's and T5's, Gordon would have been issued a refund. (The original penalty was $4,800 minus the tax refund, which resulted in an adjusted penalty of $4,600+.)

We had to appeal this penalty. We did so on the basis that if Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is going to allow employers to issue more than one (1) T4 and more than one (1) T5, then CRA should make the employer responsible to notify the employee, supplying a list of how many of each they should expect to receive and list them. This was not done by Gordon's employer. We thought we had received ALL that were issued, but we had not; therefore, we could not include them, because we had not received them. The bottom line was that we didn't even know we were supposed to have received them, so we didn't know they were missing.

After several months, we were finally notified that we won the appeal. However, CRA would not and did not waive the interest accrued on the penalty, so we had to pay the interest CRA said we owed on the money they said we did not have to pay. It may take you a moment to get your head around that one! Scary?! But, true!

We were told that this would not be allowed to happen in the future; that if we missed sending something in the future, we would be penalized with no chance of appeal.

How could this be? How can anyone know whether or not they have received all info required to file with their tax form? How can anyone know if they are missing something? Especially, if corporations are allowed to issue several T4's, T5's, etc., without notifying the recipient what to expect. We telephoned and were told by a CRA representative that we need to wait until April to call them and verify that we've received everything we need. Every year! I commented to the woman, that I was shocked. Has she ever tried to call CRA in April, during tax time?! I think not.

The worst part to the whole story, was that I had spent about 2 1/2 hours on the phone with CRA representatives before we had filed our taxes that year, to ensure that everything was done correctly. Can you imagine?!

Since only the other day, I received something I need to include with Gordon's taxes, this tells me that I was right to leave it until close to the due date before doing them, or else I would have filed incorrectly. Who knows? Maybe I would have been in trouble again.

Think this is strange? Well, I ran into someone when I was on my way out, earlier today. The gentleman was upset. Why? He received a notice that he was being fined $4800/penalty x 2 (for 2 infractions), for not including all his required information. Oooooo...be still my heart! Please pray for him, that he will win his appeal, for he and his wife have been retired many years. This would be a terrible financial hardship for them. Remember, this is not tax due. It's a penalty. Thank you. May God bless you.

Hopefully, things will go better for me, this year. I expect that everything will be very complicated. Hmmm...maybe I should just take everything to a tax accountant/preparer. Now, that sounds like a plan!

Until next time...