Today is “Tax Day” in Canada, sort of. The income tax filing deadline in Canada is usually April 30th. They get a couple weeks more than we get here in the United States. Self-employed taxpayers have until June 16th to file, although they must pay any tax due by April 30th or else they are hit with penalties and interest on their tax debt.
This year, however, Canadians have until May 5th to file their income taxes. There was a 5-day service interruption earlier this month caused by the Heartbleed bug, so authorities have granted taxpayers a corresponding 5-day deadline extension.
The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) strongly encourages taxpayers to file electronically, but there are still the 17% of paper-filing holdouts. Similar to US rules, Canadians must have their tax returns postmarked by April 30th (or May 5th this year) in order for the return to be considered timely. And just like in the United States, a Canadian tax return does not need to be mailed with any special insurance, tracking, or certification. It doesn’t have to be shipped via any special priority method either. A simple first class postage (or equivalent) will suffice. But paper filing creates unique problems (at least anecdotally) in Canada where the state-run postal service is not considered to be very trustworthy.
Check out these complaints that were undoubtedly written by grumpy Canadians on the eve of their tax filing deadline who are beginning to formulate excuses for filing late:
Assuming Canada Post even picks up mail from the mail boxes. Even so, I think majority of the post simply ends up collecting dust somewhere or even into the shredders. ~ CKHY
I received NO MAIL in the last 9 days. No junk mail, no bills I am waiting for. I never receive mail on a Monday or Friday. How can we trust Post Canada to send tax returns ? ~ Bob_The_Bear