17 Jan 2014

Hey, now you can rat out those tax cheats who are siphoning money from the federal government!

Earlier this week, the federal government launched its Offshore Tax Informant Program (OTIP), which was announced in last spring’s budget, a.k.a. the Economic Action Plan 2013. The Conservatives intend to “crack down on international tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance,” according to its news release.

Canadians who snitch on anyone they know is cheating the tax man will earn a portion of the money recovered.

In the Huffington Post on Wednesday, Revenue Minister Kerry-Lynne Findlay said informants could receive between five to 15 per cent of the money recovered, excluding interest and penalties.

That doesn’t apply, however, if the informant has been convicted of tax evasion related to the information provided. And you won’t get your money until all the tax debt has been collected and all recourse rights to the assessed tax have expired.

“This will be a critical tool for recovering taxes that would otherwise be lost to tax cheats,” she said.

“Most Canadian pay their fair share, want to pay their fair share, want to be in compliance. Those who deliberately are not, we intend to go after aggressively.”

Nabbing tax cheats

The feds have committed $30 million over five years to combat international tax evasion and aggressive tax avoidance. Half of those funds is to increase compliance and audit efforts and activities, including .

The trouble is, most Canadians reported in a Leger survey that they wouldn’t rat out anyone who’s cheating on their taxes.

Will a reward make a diference?

Here to help

A1 Accounting, a Calgary accounting and bookkeeping firm, is here to assist you with your taxes and planning. We specialize in personal taxes and small-business accounting and financial services. Contact one of our tax specialists and we can help you optimize the tax benefits and credits available to self-employed individuals and small businesses.