Odd Things with Taxes

Alright this year we managed to have a few weird things show up in our taxes.  Yes I had the standard T4’s, T5’s and T3’s and those wonderful RRSP contribution slips.  Yet I also had some strange deductions I used (you know it’s bad when the government has a web page to help you find all your tax credits).

  1. Child Fitness Tax Credit – We sign our oldest son up for swimming lessons because he likes them.  Then I got a tax slip for the class.  I basically forgot about this credit until the slip showed up.
  2. Public Transit Amount – Now this tax credit I knew about after the environmental auditor of the government pointed out how useless it was for reducing green house gas emissions.  Yet I’ll still take the reduction in taxes.
  3. Canada Pension Plan Basic Exemption – While my wife was on leave for most of last year she manged a rare feat.  She stayed below the basic exemption of CPP contributions ($3500) and owes nothing.  No tax and no CPP.

That last one was rather unexpected so I ended up with more of my wife’s basic exemption than I was planning on.  So that drove up my return.  In addition the government of Saskatchewan made some tax cuts retroactive to 2008 and further drove up my return.  So all in all I’m looking at a refund of over $3500.

Which to be honest I’m not thrilled over.  I’ve been giving the government a loan of my money for most of a year.  I typically like to work it to have a small refund each year, but this was over kill.  Perhaps it is time to start getting some additional income tax reduced at source for some of my RRSP contributions.

So how did your taxes go this year?  Any odd tax deductions that you used?  If so please share so perhaps you can save someone else a bit of tax.

6 thoughts on “Odd Things with Taxes”

  1. Taxes went as well as they always have. I’m lucky to have someone close to me who works for CRA and is a tax expert who goes over my return and helps me out. But other than RRSP deductions and the transit pass, I really don’t get much of a break on my taxes.

  2. I am not a senior, I am not a parent, I am not disabled, I am not a trades person, I am not a student.

    I get no breaks as a single, self-sufficient contributor to society 😉

  3. You both are right that some of this odd credits or deduction only apply to very specific groups.

    I personally think they are a waste. Why can’t we just have a one page tax form with at most four deductions.


  4. Tim,

    That would require something like has been proposed in the states by a few senators. Doing a fair tax. Pick a rate. 20% or whatever and that gets applied to everything for sale. When you make $1000 at your employers. You take home $1000. I think that would be great.


  5. I don’t think you should worry too much about your big refund. I too prefer to keep as much as possible when I get paid and minimize my “loan” to the gov’t. If you knew your wife would have little income you could have filed a new TD1 with your employer to claim the spousal credit. As for the big change to the prov basic exemption, that wasn’t announced until fall of last year so there wasn’t much you could have done.

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