Tax Measures Under Canada’s COVID-19 Economic Response Plan

To reduce the administrative burdens and the necessity for taxpayers to meet with tax preparers in person, the CRA will recognize electronic signatures as having met the signature requirements of the ITA on a temporary basis. This will allow certain authorization forms (T183 Information Return for Electronic Filing of an Individual’s Income Tax and Benefit Return, or T183CORP Information Return for Corporations Filing Electronically), which normally require signed originals, to be signed electronically.

Free tax clinics[62] will be held virtually on an interim basis to assist those who depend on this service while respecting physical distance guidelines. Clinics will have greater flexibility to receive and authenticate documents in various ways, including using video communication.

To avoid taxpayers having to declare bankruptcy, the CRA[63] proposes a solution to assist taxpayers and Licensed Insolvency Trustees (“LITs”) in circumstances where the CRA is a creditor and the debtor is experiencing financial hardship. CRA is waiving the default pursuant to section 62.1 of the Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act (“BIA”), and is granting a deferral of payments to the estate up to September 1, 2020. This includes any amounts subject to section 60(1.1) of the BIA as per CRA’s existing Administrative Agreement policy with LITs for proposals that are tabled under Part I of the BIA. For consumer proposals under the BIA, the CRA is accepting an amended proposal deferring payments up to September 1, 2020.

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