One of the services we offer within our firm is bookkeeping services. Quite simply, bookkeeping is the record-keeping aspect of accounting regarding the transaction and financial activities of a business. Keeping accurate bookkeeping information is crucial to any business, but ironically, often overlooked. It is a service that is often lumped together with another employee's role (i.e. administrative assistant or a business owner taking on the responsibility themselves). This can lead to delays and getting behind, getting pulled into other tasks or uncertainty about certain aspects of bookkeeping recording.
Here's a look at a few of the advantages of outsourcing your bookkeeping needs:
- The bookkeeper you hire is paid by the amount of work that gets done. Their sole focus for you is on your books, nothing else. They will not be pulled into other company matters and can diligently work in an effective time period.
- There is flexibility in hiring someone outside - the hired bookkeeper can work remotely or as part of an integrated team. They work according to what works for you - whether it's once a week, once a month, a few hours a week or month, etc. The frequency depends on your need.
- There are no overhead costs to you - the bookkeeper comes prepared with their own infrastructure and assets to perform the job. You do not have to look at creating office space for a bookkeeper. You are paying them for only one job, and don't have to get into mandatory employee deductions.
- We get it, bookkeeping is not always the most exciting task, but it is what we do, we know the rules and we're experts in it. We have seen many instances where an employee was tasked with bookkeeping duties and they get in to a monotonous routine, stop learning, which leads to boredom and either end up doing lots of complaining or ultimately, resigning from the company. Because an external bookkeeper works for multiple businesses, there is never time for boredom.
- An external bookkeeper provides outside perspective on your business. They are not involved in the day to day operations, nor are they involved in a common habit, "well we've always done it this way". Hiring externally can bring new insights without emotional or historical ties and a clear perspective on your bookkeeping processes.
It is important for any business owner to find a bookkeeper that fits your needs and brings the best value and expertise. Trusting an expert to help you through this saves both time and money for a crucial part of your business.
If you've got questions on our bookkeeping services, contact Lisa Gallant for more information.
Congratulations! If you have a new baby or a baby on the way, there are many benefits and credits you may be eligible to receive, and tax changes to consider.
Apply for child benefits
With the Automated Benefits Application (ABA), you can automatically apply for child benefits when registering the birth of your new baby. If you live in a province that has ABA and give your permission, you will automatically be applying or registering for:
- the Canada child benefit (CCB)– A tax-free monthly payment made to eligible families to help them with the cost of raising a child under 18
- the goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit - A tax-free quarterly payment that helps families and individuals with low and modest incomes offset all or part of the GST or HST that they pay
- any related provincial programs – Most provinces and territories also have child and family benefits and credits, which families can receive in addition to the CCB and the GST/HST credit
If you live in a territory that does not have ABA, you can apply for child and family benefits using the “Apply for child benefits” service through My Account or by completing and mailing Form RC66, Canada Child Benefits Application to your tax centre.
Can you claim the working income tax benefit?
Your baby is considered an eligible dependent, which means you may now claim the working income tax benefit (WITB), or the amount you claimed before might increase. The WITB is a refundable tax credit that provides tax help for working low-income families and individuals. Eligible individuals and families may be able to apply for WITB advance payments, which are paid quarterly.
Save for your child's education
It's never too early to start saving for your child's future education by contributing to a registered education savings plan (RESP). Programs such as the Canada education savings grant (CESG) and the Canada learning bond (CLB) are other reasons for creating an RESP for your child. These programs may provide incentives for using an RESP to save for a child's education after high school (post-secondary education).
For more information on child and family benefits, go to cra.gc.ca/benefits.
For more information contact any member of our tax team.
This information was made available at: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/nwsrm/txtps/2017/tfsk6-eng.html
If you donated to a registered Canadian charity or other qualified donee that provides official donation receipts, you may qualify for a charitable donation tax credit when you file your income tax and benefit return.
Where do you get an official donation receipt?
Some examples of other qualified donees are:
- registered Canadian amateur athletic associations
- registered Canadian municipalities
- the United Nations and its agencies
How long should you keep a charitable donation receipt?
You should keep your official donation receipts for six years after the end of the tax year for which you made a claim, in case the Canada Revenue Agency asks to see them.
What donations qualify for a charitable donation tax credit?
Donations of cash, goods, land, and listed securities to a registered charity or other qualified donee may be eligible for a charitable donation tax credit.
How do you calculate your charitable donation tax credit?
To calculate your charitable donation tax credit, you first need to figure out the eligible amount of your charitable donations. Once you know that amount, you need to decide how much you want to claim. In any one tax year, you can claim:
- donations you made by December 31 of that year
- any unclaimed donations you made in the previous five years
- any unclaimed donations your spouse or common-law partner made during the year or in the last five years
You can claim eligible donations of up to 75% of your net income. Gifts of certified cultural property or ecologically sensitive land are not limited to a percentage of your net income.
Are you a first-time donor?
You are considered a first-time donor if you or your spouse or common-law partner have not claimed and been allowed a charitable donation tax credit after 2007. If you qualify, you may be able to claim the first‑time donor’s super credit. However, only gifts of money are eligible. For donations made after March 20, 2013, qualifying first-time donors may receive an additional federal tax credit of 25% on the first $1,000 of monetary donations.
For more information on charities, donations, and charitable donation tax credits, go to cra.gc.ca/charities.
For more information contact any member of our tax team.
This information was made available at: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/nwsrm/txtps/2017/tfsk21-eng.html
The Government of Canada values the contribution teachers make providing young Canadians with the education and skills they need to join a strong middle class.
There is a new refundable tax credit for 2016 and beyond: the Eligible Educator School Supply Tax Credit. If you are an eligible educator you can now claim a 15% refundable tax credit on up to $1,000 of supply purchases per year.
Who is eligible?
You can only claim this tax credit if you are a teacher or early childhood educator employed at an elementary or secondary school or a regulated child care facility:
- You must have a teacher’s certificate that is valid in the province or territory where you are employed; or
- You must have a certificate or diploma in early childhood education that is recognized in the province or territory where you are employed.
What kinds of teaching supplies are eligible?
For your supplies to be eligible for this credit, they must be:
- purchased in the taxation year by an eligible educator;
- used in a school or in a regulated child care facility for teaching or helping students learn;
- not reimbursable and not subject to an allowance or other form of assistance (unless the reimbursement, allowance or assistance is included in the income of the teacher or educator and not deductible); and
- not deducted or used in calculating a deduction from any person’s income for any taxation year.
Some examples of eligible supplies include:
- construction paper;
- items for science experiments;
- art supplies;
- various writing materials
- games and puzzles;
- books for the classroom; and
- educational support software.
If you claim this tax credit, the CRA may ask you to provide a certification from your employer attesting to the eligible supplies expense. You should request the certification from your employer in a timely manner and keep it in your files, along with your receipts, in case the CRA requests it.
This information was made available at: http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/nwsrm/txtps/2017/tt170316-eng.html