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Two quarterly newsletters have been added—one about personal issues, and one about corporate issues.

To an ever-increasing degree Canadians, including Canadian businesses, are managing their tax affairs and dealing with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) online, through the CRA website. That’s a trend that the Agency is eager to encourage and, to that end, it continues to add to the kinds of services and options which are available through the website. The most recent such changes add to the services available to Canadian businesses through the website service My Business Account.

After getting off to a somewhat bumpy start when they were first introduced in 2009, tax-free savings accounts (TFSAs) have become extremely popular with Canadians. The misunderstandings and mistakes which were all too common during the rollout of the program now occur with less frequency, and most Canadians who put aside savings on a regular basis have utilized TFSAs as a tax and savings vehicle.

As the number of Canadians approaching retirement age increases, so too does the concern that not enough of them are financially prepared for that retirement. Those concerns arise from two sources. First, the number of Canadians who are members of employer-sponsored registered pension plans has declined steadily over the past few decades, and now fewer than one-third of Canadian workers can count on receiving payments from such a plan in retirement. Even fewer are covered by the “gold standard” of pension plans—a defined benefit pension plan—which guarantees the payment of benefits at a pre-determined amount throughout retirement. Second, Canadians who are not members of registered pension plans are able to save for retirement through registered retirement savings plans (RRSPs). However, while many Canadians do contribute to their RRSPs each year, the amount contributed is, in many cases, significantly less than the maximum possible contribution which can be made by an individual for the year. As well, many Canadians have a significant RRSP contribution carryforward amount, indicating a pattern of contributing less than the allowable maximum in previous years.

Providing children with the opportunity to participate in organized sports or other athletic activities can be a very expensive undertaking. The cost of enrollment in such programs is sometimes just the start, as parents also face expenditures for uniforms and equipment (which children inevitably outgrow) and, sometimes, the cost of travel to games or tournaments.

Two quarterly newsletters have been added—one about personal issues, and one about corporate issues.

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