The time to start your tax planning strategies is earlier in the year rather that later.
In Canada, and from what I read in the newspapers and online, most taxpayers worldwide feel that they are paying too much tax.
And to add insult to injury, most of the taxes paid are not being put to good use.
Almost daily, we hear about the misuse of some huge amount of tax funds gathered from taxpayers.
While it seems we can do little about these transgressions, we can use effective tax planning strategies that will help us minimize our tax liabilities.
Tax planning does not involve convoluted tactics to hide or reduce income.
These will get you into big trouble with your tax collector and are not worth the effort, especially when there are legal and more beneficial ways to keep more money in your pockets and away from the Taxman.
A very effective tax planning strategy is to make charitable donations.
In Canada, the Canada Revenue Agency allows tax payers to donate up to 75% of their income.
Which means your income for taxes would be on just 25% of your earnings.
A very effective tax reduction incentive!
However, not many tax payers can realistic afford to do this.
Many Canadian tax payers do make charitable donations in an effort to be philanthropic as well as to receive the resulting tax credits.
Beware! Not all charities are created equal and some are downright suspect.
At the very least a charitable organization should be registered and have a verifiable tax ID number.
Not all charitable organizations adhere to the strict guidelines that make a good charity program effective and sustainable even when challenged by the tax collecting agencies.
When looking at tax shelter programs (this is what these tax reduction strategies are called) it is important that you inquire about how the program deals with issues of “valuation”, “advantages”, and “impoverishment”.
In Canada, recent legislation has established rules that prohibit tax payers from receiving a tax credit for donating property at an appraised price that is higher than the property’s purchase price. Previously, donors were allowed to acquire property at a low price and gift it to a charitable organization, receiving in exchange a donation receipt at the higher appraised value.
Under the new legislation, the value of the receipt must equal the original purchase price of the donated item provided that this amount does not exceed fair market value.
The value of any “advantage” (personal financial benefit) that you might receive from making your donation must now be deducted from the value of your donation receipt.
For example, those donors who purchase a $200 charity golf tournament ticket and received dinner, drinks and course fees valued at $140, would only receive a $60 donation receipt.
To claim a tax credit for a donation, donors must demonstrate they are impoverished financially after making their donation.
In other words, donors must be “out of pocket” as a result of the transaction.
To make your charitable donation effective as a tax planning ensure that any program you choose is compliant in all these aspects.
There is no point in using tax planning strategies that will not stand up to scrutiny or worse yet, have you accused of attempting to circumvent the rules of compliancy.
Yvonne Finn invites you to come visit her website to learn how she can show you how to get back up to 90% of your annual income by using effective and CRA compliant tax shelters.