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What are the Effects of the PSAC Strike on Canadians During the Tax Season?

Austin Campbell

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PSAC

On April 19, the Public Service Alliance of Canada (PSAC) began its strike. PSAC claimed that the reason for the strike is to pressure the government into negotiating fair pay, a better work-life balance, greater workplace inclusion, and fewer layoffs through the creation of new jobs rather than outsourcing them to private businesses.

Despite the strike, the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has stated that it will not change the tax filing deadlines for Canadians. Additionally, while some CRA services will continue to be provided during the strike, others will see delays and other difficulties owing to a diminished workforce.

IRCC Services Partially or Fully Disrupted

According to IRCC, some delays and disruptions can be anticipated in the following areas like:

  • Processing applications;
  • Benefit payment issuance related to the Canada Child Benefit (CCB) program;
  • in-person meetings or events, and citizenship ceremonies;
  • Contacting IRCC via phone, email, or social media, consular citizenship and passport services;
  • Issuance of tax return benefits (ex. GST/HST credit, Climate Action Incentive Payment (CAIP))
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IRCC Services Maintained

Some services will still be offered to applicants:

  • You can still use your online accounts;
  • Submit applications by mail to IRCC;
  • Apply online;
  • Access some emergency services

The government also confirmed that the Canada Child Benefit will continue throughout the work disruption and that benefit payments would be prioritised for the following:

  • Employment Insurance Act;
  • Canada Pension Plan;
  • Veterans Income Support Program;
  • Old Age Security Program, and;
  • Guaranteed Income Supplement

Filing Taxes in Canada

A tax return is a form submitted to the CRA that lists your income, credits, and deductions for a certain tax year. Even though you only spent a portion of the year in Canada, you might be required to file a tax return either through job or investments. A tax return must be submitted if you need to pay taxes, claim a refund. You can complete your tax return either online or offline.

You would need to use approved software to submit your taxes online because it will send your finished tax return to the CRA. You may require a paper return if you wish to file your taxes in person. After completion, the paper return would be mailed to your tax centre.

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Credits and Benefits

Canada offers a number of advantages and credits to help you financially. You must obtain:

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  • a social insurance number (SIN) from Service Canada
  • Apply for the credit and benefits for which you are qualified.
  • Additional benefits include GST/HST or the Canada Child Benefit

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