Does The CRA Have The Final Word?
Any tax payer that has to deal with the Canada tax department often does so with a certain amount of wariness. This is a very powerful sector of the government that can have a direct effect on an individual’s finances on an individual basis.
If a person has a point of contention with the tax people they often assume that these professionals are always right and the word of the tax man is final. There are rules, regulations and policies that the tax department follows for reaching their conclusions.
What some do not realize that although policies are in place they are based on the tax laws but are not the legal form of the tax laws. People also realize that the tax laws are very complex and for this reason alone unless it is a very serious matter related to their tax situation they have no desire to take any further steps beyond the first level of the tax department to sort out their matter.
This has been recognized by the tax department and over the last several years this department has worked hard at creating a fair and equal atmosphere in its dealings with the public. Any tax payer now has resources to utilize if they feel they are not being treated fairly. There are appeal levels where tax decisions can be taken to if the taxpayer feels the decision that they have been given is not correct. Above this are the tax courts where a judge can be asked for a ruling, and will make that ruling based on the actual Canada tax laws, and not on tax policy. The tax laws are a matter of interpretation and it sometimes takes a judge who specializes in these laws to determine how they apply to a specific tax payer’s case. In some cases the courts will rule in favor of the CRA, but there are also times where the ruling is in favor of the taxpayer.
It is common knowledge that most people feel they are being over taxed and a lot of time and effort is spent on trying to find loop holes in the tax system in favor of the tax payer. Most often if there are any then the tax rules and regulations will be amended to close up the loop hole.
A lot of people are now using professional accounting services to help them with their tax matters and to gain a better understanding of the tax laws in layman’s terms when it comes to filing. It gives them a sense of confidence and many now use this to help with their decisions as to whether they should challenge a decision over a grey area of their tax matter.