Finances

10 useful tips to file your taxes online

Planning to file your taxes online this year? Good idea! Here are 10 great tips to file your taxes your way!

New initiatives announced this year from Revenue Quebec and Canadian Revenue Agency aim to simplify the tax return process to make it easier and more accessible for Canadian families to file online.

Quebec-based tax software UFile recently announced a complete redesign of their popular online and desktop software for tax year 2015. Compatible across all platforms and browsers, it now offers intuitive navigation and personalized services to make the filing process simple and quick.

After recently testing the new software, we found the new Tax Savings Ideas tool and real-time diagnostic panel was like working with a virtual accountant – no credits, deductions or transfers went overlooked. To celebrate simpler tax returns this year (hooray!), here are 10 quick tips from UFile to help file your taxes your way this year.

10 useful tips to file your taxes online

1. According to the CRA, one in four Canadians will wait until the final week before the April 30th deadline to file their taxes. Don’t leave money with the government any longer than you have to. You can file online from the comfort of your own home and get your money in the bank faster than filing a paper return.

2. Filing tax returns for your entire family doesn’t have to be prohibitively time consuming. UFile allows you to create one complete family “unit” within the same user file allowing for ease of navigation and entering of information.

3. Once you’ve prepared your family’s return through your tax software program, you can submit your return directly to the CRA through NETFILE. No need to waste paper or spend time travelling to the post office.

4. In NETFILE’s early days, submitting your .tax file was cumbersome and required a web access code that could be complicated to obtain. Now, not only is the web access code not needed, there is no need to save the .tax file to your desktop and upload it to the CRA. Simply click a button within your tax software program to NETFILE your return and receive your confirmation number.

5. If you owe money after filing, the CRA makes it easy to pay through Internet banking or with your credit card through online payment provider Plastiq. With Internet banking, you can even postdate your payment for May 2, 2016.

6. Filing online for the first time, especially for those with limited computer skills, can be intimidating. Set up like a virtual interview with an accountant, UFile’s logical, step-by-step question stream makes it pretty hard to forget a slip or receipt as you are prompted for all the required information each step of the way. Also, if a slip comes in later than the rest, it’s easy to enter it quickly without retracing your steps.

7. If you’re like many Canadians, preparing your taxes can feel like riding the streetcar – a lot of starts and stops. Not everyone has the organizational foresight to have all the necessary paperwork in one spot. Don’t worry about completing your online return in one sitting. The software will save your information and you can log in and out as many times as you need to.

8. Allocating deductions, tuition transfers and income splitting amounts are confusing and can affect your family’s tax refund (or amount owing). Remember, not all tax software are created equal; while some programs make you do the guesswork, UFile automatically applies these tax saving credits and deductions, eliminating the hassle of trying to figure out what’s right for your family.

9. Although tax software programs use the same security as banks use for Internet banking, some Canadians are still unsure about the safety of submitting confidential information online. The leading tax software programs have a web-based platform and a desktop software version for those who may still be hesitant to input personal information over the Internet.

10. Hiring an accountant can be expensive. For under $28, a family can file their returns online with UFile and, because UFile can prepare any kind of tax return, there are never any surprise costs. Moreover, if you are a post-secondary student, new to Canada, or a senior receiving the guaranteed income supplement, filing online is free!

UFile is available in-store and online at Jean Coutu, Staples, Best Buy, Loblaws, The Source, Walmart, Rexall Drugs. Visit www.ufile.ca for more information and join the conversation on Twitter @UFile and UFile’s Facebook Page #TaxesYourWay

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