CRA Automatic Tax Filing Pilot is Coming in 2024

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The Government of Canada says it plans to launch a new automatic tax filing service in 2024, as detailed in its 2023 Budget released earlier this week.

The feds say at present, up to 12% of Canadians do not file their tax returns, with most being low-income individuals who would pay little or no income tax. These Canadians are missing out on valuable benefits and support, such as the Canada Child Benefit and the Guaranteed Income Supplement.

Since 2018, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has offered the free File My Return service, allowing eligible Canadians to auto-file their tax returns over the phone after answering a series of short questions. In the 2022 tax filing season, roughly 53,000 returns were filed using this service.

Within Budget 2023, the government plans to increase the number of eligible Canadians for File My Return to two million by 2025, nearly tripling the current number. A progress update on this plan will be shared next year, we’re told.

But also in 2024, the CRA will pilot a new automatic filing service to help vulnerable Canadians who do not file their taxes receive the benefits they are entitled to. The feds note after consultations with stakeholders and community organizations, the CRA will present a plan in 2024 to expand this service even further.

Filing taxes in Canada can be a daunting and excruciating task, especially for those that don’t have the means to do so. As for how this automatic tax filing service will work, that remains to be seen. Will the feds create this automatic tax filing pilot in-house, or source a third party for the job?

Other Budget 2023 grand ideas include an ambitious plan to tackle “junk fees”, including internet overage and telecom roaming fees, while also creating a standard charging port for electronics, similar to the European Union.