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Explore expert opinion, insights, news, and updates from the world of bookkeeping.

Beat the heat with CRA’s summer benefits!

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Whether you’re here for the heat or not – we know one thing will never go out of season: benefit and credit payments and tax-free savings.

Read on to find out what’s new, what’s changing, and what payments you could receive to help you beat the heat.

July resets our benefit calendar for most payments – look out for a notice from us to get your payment info

The CRA wants to keep up with your life changes. Each July we review your account to make sure your benefit and credit payments support your situation.

You can help make sure your payments aren’t interrupted by filing your income tax and benefit return on time every year – even if you don’t have an income to report. Miss the filing deadline? Not to worry, you can file anytime to update your account. Visit Get ready to do your taxes to get started.

Mark the following dates in your calendar!

July’s payment dates:

  • June 30: last day to apply for period two of the interim Canada Dental Benefit
  • July 5: GST/HST credit payment date
  • July 12: Advanced Canada worker’s benefit payment date
  • July 15: Canada Carbon Rebate (CCR) payment date
  • July 19: Canada child benefit (CCB) payment date

Want a friendly nudge about your upcoming payment dates? Sign up for email reminders at canada.ca/benefit-credit-payment-reminders. You can also sign up for direct deposit at canada.ca/cra-direct-deposit to get your funds straight to your bank account. This also helps avoid any interruptions in the event of extreme weather, or postal interruptions, in your area.

Remember, if you get mail from the CRA, please read it right away. If it is a reminder about an outstanding benefit payment – or another debt - it is important to make plans to address that request right away to help you avoid collections actions down the line. 

Newcomers need to know

New to Canada? We want to help you settle in as soon as you arrive! Furnishing your home, getting household supplies, and dressing for the weather can include sales tax, like the goods and services or harmonized sales tax (GST/HST), but individuals and families with lower incomes can get cash back. 

If you’re eligible, you can apply as soon as you arrive to Canada. Find how to apply atBenefits, credits, and taxes for newcomers - Canada.ca. While you’re there, make sure to check if you’re entitled to receive the quarterly CCR payment as well. 

Saving for your first dream house

Whether you’re hoping to build or looking for a move-in ready unit, it’s never too late, or too early, to start saving for a place to call your own and we’ve got programs to help you enter the real-estate market:

First Home Savings Account (FHSA)

The FHSA is a registered plan that allows you to save for your first home tax free (up to certain limits)

o An FHSA lets you contribute (or transfer from your RRSPs) up to $40,000, with an annual limit of $8,000, in addition to your unused FHSA participation room. When you’re ready to buy or build your first qualifying home you can withdraw from your FHSA tax-free!

o You can deduct your FHSA contribution on your income tax and benefit return.

Home Buyers’ Plan (HPB)

The HPBlets you take up to $60,000 out of your RRSP to buy or build a home for yourself or a specified disabled person. The withdrawal is tax-free if you pay it back into your RRSP over the 15-year repayment period.

o To make the most of your savings, you can capitalize on a tax-free withdrawal from both your FHSA and your RRSP for the same home (as a part of the HBP).

o And to make it easier to pay back into your RRSP, Budget 2024 recently introduced an extended grace period if you made or make a withdrawal between January 1, 2022 and December 31, 2025. That means you will have a five-year grace period, starting on the day you made the withdrawal, before you start your 15-year repayment period.

GST/HST New Housing Rebate

The GST/HST New Housing Rebate could help with the cost of building or buying a newly built home. Saving some of the GST/HST would help reduce upfront costs to make homeownership more affordable.

Benefits are a-changing

Canada Carbon Rebate (CCR)

This benefit was recently re-named but the financial support it provides hasn’t changed. The CCR offers Canadians in participating provinces relief from federal carbon pricing. You’re eligible to receive these quarterly payments if you have filed your 2023 taxes, are 19 or older and have lived in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, Nova Scotia or Prince Edward Island for at least the past month.

Enjoying life outside the city? This year’s CCR offers an extra cool treat for “country” living with a doubled rural supplement. Rural residents will now get a 20% boost on top of the rebate. While this won’t be quite ready for the July CCR payment, the supplement increase will be retroactive to April so you can expect a boost later this year with the increased amounts for April and July.

Canada child benefit (CCB) news

Another important piece of legislation passed this summer for families supporting children. In recognition of the hardships experienced by grieving families, the Government of Canada has implemented legislation that will extend CCB payments up to six months following the death of a child, as of January 1, 2025.

Interim Canada Dental Benefit (closing June 30)

Calling all families with young children! The last day to apply for the interim Canada Dental Benefit is fast approaching.

Apply by June 30 to get up to $650 per child for the dental care they received between July 1, 2023, and June 30, 2024.

You’re eligible for the benefit if:

  • your child is younger than 12 as of July 1, 2023;
  • your family’s income is under $90,000;
  • your child doesn’t have access to private insurance;
  • your child isn’t receiving support from another dental program;
  • your child received dental care between July 1, 2023 and June 30, 2024;
  • you already get the Canada child benefit (CCB) for your child; and
  • you’ve filed your 2022 tax return.

You are entitled to the credits from both period 1 (ending June 30, 2023) and period 2 so if you did not use up your credit for period 1, you could claim an additional payment amount on top of the $650 this time around. Learn more about the interim benefit or apply at canada.ca/dental.

Don’t forget, the Canadian Dental Care Plan (CDCP) will soon be available to children under 18 to make dental care more affordable for all eligible Canadians. Find out what age groups can apply by visiting Canada.ca.

Disability tax credit digital application

The application form for the Disability tax credit (DTC) is now just a click away. Tired of chasing drafts of paper applications around your home? Now both you and your medical practitioner can fill out your (respective) sections of the DTC application fully online.

The DTC helps eligible people with disabilities, and supporting family members, reduce the amount of income tax they may have to pay. Want to know if you’re eligible? Visit canada.ca/disability-tax-credit to learn more.

Dedicated lines for sign languages

We want you to have your say and to provide you the support you need to get your benefits and credits. We’ve partnered with the Canadian Administrator of Video Relay Service to offer dedicated phone lines for Video Relay Service (VRS) to serve clients using sign languages.

Now you can communicate with us in American sign language (ASL) or langue des signes Québécoise (LSQ), to get the support you need. These lines will offer equal opportunity to connect directly with a CRA agent via a sign language interpreter. Just make sure you’re signed up with Canada VRS and you’re all set.

Unlock the potential of the CRA’s self-service options

If you have filed your taxes in Canada in the last two years you can register for My Account.

My Account helps save you time as you can:

  • apply for new benefits;
  • track your requests;
  • check on your incoming payments and any amounts you may owe;
  • update your personal information;
  • find any unused government cheques;
  • sign up for direct deposit to get all your benefit and credit payments, and even your tax refunds, deposited straight into your bank account.
  • NEW this year: you won’t have to wait for a CRA security code in the mail anymore when you register. We’ve introduced a digital identity validation option, known as the document verification service. Just take a picture of your accepted government-issued photo identification, and of yourself, when you register to have your account validated on the spot!

Already have My Account? Glad to hear it. Now you’re ready for some of our other self-serve tools that will help cut through the search engine noise.

CRA’s top self-serve tips

  1. This is how we do it – Our personal income tax page offers detailed information about how to file your income tax and benefit return – no matter how late you may be doing it!
  2. What we do - You can view benefit payment dates on Canada.ca and even sign up to receive email reminders for your upcoming payments.
  3. When we do it
    1. Find out how long it may take to process your request using the check CRA processing times tool on Canada.ca. This is the same information our contact centre agents have access to when asked about processing times.
    2. Want to know today’s wait times for our contact centre? Our contact information page offers live estimated times to help you plan ahead.
  4. Who gets it done 
    1. Charlie the chatbot can answer most straightforward, simple questions about anything available on the CRA’s website. Find Charlie on the CRA homepage and on many of our other web pages on Canada.ca.
    2. Learn from experience – we’ve used frequently asked questions from other users to share answers to the CRA’s top questions. Find your answer by going to our contact us page.

The CRA wants to help you get the benefits, credits, refunds and tax breaks you’re entitled to this summer. Whether it’s benefit payments, uncashed cheques, or tax breaks you’re after, you can visit Canada.ca or sign-in to My Account to make sure you keep getting the payments you’re entitled to well after summer is out of reach.

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