Review of CRA 12 Step Red Tape Reduction Plan Part 2
Part 2 – Effective Communication to Satisfy Taxpayer Requirements
Now that we have the CRA dealing with timely information, availability and clarity as we seen in part one it is time to look at part 2 of the CRA action plan.
One area that they will be approaching is their communication sector. If you have ever had to call the CRA then you probably are well aware of where this needs improvement. It is not uncommon to reach a call centre agent who isn’t quite sure about the information they are giving you. In this new red cutting action plan it is proposed that these agents will receive more training and resources to work with. Also, now you will be able to track your information source as each of these agents now will give their name and ID number. If you have been treated with less than a courteous manner, or not able to get the help you need in the past, at least now you have a way of addressing this by at least knowing who you were dealing with.
It is not uncommon in the past to make a call regarding a business tax matter and end up being more confused then when you started. Then when you call back you get another agent and end up with entirely different information.
It has to be remembered that the Canada tax laws are a matter of interpretation. This means that possibly when you are talking with a tax agent at their call center that two agents could have a different perception regarding the issue that you are talking about.
This can and has led to problems in the past. A business person acts upon the information they are given as they understand it. Then when they are having their tax returns prepared they may be advised by their tax accountant that it is not done correctly. This can create huge headaches for the business person.
With this new action plan it would seem that these individuals at the call centers will be better trained. If they are not able to answer a question confidently then perhaps they will have better resources to turn to in order to get you the proper answer.
At least now if you make a mistake on your taxes based on information that was provided to you and you have to appeal it then you have the source who provided you with the info. that you relied on. That doesn’t handle the problem of misunderstanding though. This is really why you will still need to rely on your tax accountant to ensure that the final tax return is done properly.