A newcomer working in Canada must do two important tasks of creating account as soon as possible:
When personal finance is occasionally brought up in a conversation during tax season, I often ask if they have a CRA account.
Some would say my wife/husband (but mostly wife) created my account. She’s in charge. To which I want to answer “and so are you” but I refrain.
Or they’ll say the password has passed into oblivion. Adios!
Listen up! Checking and having a CRA account is important. It will help you in your financial journey in so many ways.
What if You Cannot Create a CRA Account
This struggle do happens and it might happen to you.
I didn’t have any issue when I created a CRA account but my friend did and an obvious reason is self-explanatory.
You haven’t file your income tax return. Nada. Nothing.
The browser will show error 038 in every attempt so don’t bother trying again but keep on reading.
If you think you filed and income tax return through a tax preparer (eg. H&R Block), an accountant, or a friend, it’s best to call CRA to verify the tax filing so have the following identification and record when making a call.
- Social Identification Number (SIN)
- Notice of Assessment
- T4 – record of employment
Calling CRA means waiting for a long time.
Let’s say at least 15 minutes if you’re lucky. Stay on the line and bear with whatever music is playing on the other line while waiting. How do you like Christmas song?
Don’t cancel the call. And don’t fall asleep either.
Going back to not knowing whether you file a tax return or not.
How can you not know?
Well things can happen when enlisting help from others.
Why People Fail to File an Income Tax Return
I used to make and file my own income tax return online when I didn’t have yet a side hustle income from my blogs.
Life was simple back then. I work without thinking and keeping track of blog expenses.
Here’s how a tax return is made:
- Collect all T4s, RRSP receipt, medical expenses etc.
- Enter all necessary information in a tax software. I used StudioTax (free) and Turbo Tax.
- Save a PDF copy of the tax return.
- File the income tax return online through NETFILE.
- Save a PDF copy of tax filing confirmation. This could come in handy.
As you can see ANYBODY can create a tax return and do not file it yet especially if there’s a tax owing instead of refund.
Another reason why people delay filing is because they are waiting for other records to be added.
Sometimes the goal of filing income tax return is forgotten or missed the deadline.
Related Post: How to Pay Your Personal Income Taxes
Don’t let an error stop you from making a CRA account.
File your first income tax return and wait for the Notice of Assessment in the mail.
For succeeding tax season, get into the habit of checking online your CRA account to change address and check balance owe.
As a dual citizen, I stop using my IRCC account. As a Canadian, I’ll keep on checking my CRA account as long as I can. So should you.
What do you often use your CRA account for?