Top Five Things Missed When Filing Tax Returns
Tax time is getting closer than we think (2016 deadline to file is April 30) and The Nelson Daily, with help from H&R Block, is providing tips to the public leading up to the final day of filing to Revenue Canada.
Today the focus is on the top five things missed when filing tax returns.
Top Five Things You Missed On Your Tax Return
1. Employment expenses: You may incur expenses for your job but they are not automatically a tax deduction. You can only claim employment expenses if it is part of your job contract and you have a signed T2200 Declaration of Conditions of Employment. Plus you need supporting receipts to see the tax savings.
2. Student loan interest: If you have graduated or left school and are paying off government student loans, you can claim your annual interest as a tax credit. Interest on private loans or lines of credit doesn’t qualify.
3. Public Transit passes: This credit was originally introduced to encourage people to take public transit regularly but there are rules around what passes you can claim. Monthly passes are easy to claim but passes for shorter periods only qualify if they last for at least 5 consecutive days and you buy enough of them to give you unlimited travel for at least 20 days in any 28-day period. Electronic payment card rules can also qualify depending on how often you use them. But you must keep your receipts and passes to be able to claim the credit.
4. Moving expenses: You can claim expenses if you move 40 kms or more for work or school. Besides the usual moving and transportation costs, you are also allowed to claim storage costs, up to 15 days of temporary accommodations, meals, and the cost of cancelling a lease or selling your old home. The legal costs incurred in buying a new home can also be claimed, but only if you sold your old home as a result of the move.
5. Medical expenses: The amount you can claim is tied to your income so the more receipts you have, the better chance you will see some tax savings. Receipts for alternative practitioners like acupuncturists, naturopaths and practitioners of traditional Chinese medicine can be claimed only if the service is provided in provinces where they are regulated. Amounts not covered by your extended health plan are medical expenses. And if you have to travel more than 40 kms to get healthcare, you can claim transportation expenses.
A tax professional at H&R Block at 810 Vernon Street, Nelson, BC, V1L 4G4 can talk about other credits and deductions that may affect you. Call (250) 354-4210 and ask for Ellen. Or to find the office nearest you visit www.hrblock.ca