CRA Deadlines you need to know

One of the questions we get a lot is “What are my CRA Deadlines?”  When do I have to pay them by.  What happens if I do not?

You think this is a simple question – and for us it is but for new business owners it gets very confusing very fast.  So this is what you need to know so that we can answer that question.

  • Which CRA Deadlines are you asking about?
    • GST
    • Payroll
    • Corporate tax
    • WCB (not the CRA but important none the less)
  • How frequently do you need to file?  CRA Deadlines are determined by filing frequency and period end date.
    • When GST gets set up it usually should be annual – but I have seen mistakes made where it was set up quarterly or worse monthly
      • Quarterly or Monthly
        • By the end of the next month *ie January GST is due end of February
      •  Annual
        • You have 3 months for filing and paying * ie January is due end of April
    • Corporate is annual
      • it is based on when your registered your company if you incorporated
      • It is a calendar year if you are unincorporated
        • You have 3 months to pay your taxes – but 6 months to file.
          • Yes your CRA Deadline for payment is before you technically need to know when how much you owe.  Estimates are good if you are not ready to file.
      • After filing you may need to start paying installments – your accountant should let you know when and how much you need to remit in installments.
    • Payroll
      • It is the 15th of the next month until you get really large.
    • WCB (Alberta)
      • Honestly look at your online portal they pick different months for different businesses sometime monthly, sometimes quarterly usually I see every second month.  They will send you invoices though.
      • Really small businesses are annually paid in advance (you estimate what you will owe for the current year in January or February and pay it up front).
      • Filing is done before end of February summarizing the last calendar year and estimating the next one.
GST – filing and payment due at end of the month
Period end date Monthly or Quarterly due date Annual due date
January February April
February March May
March April June
April May July
May June August
June July September
July August October
August September November
September October December
October November January
November December February
December January March
Period end date Payment due date Filing due date
January April June
February May July
March June August
April July September
May August October
June September November
July October December
August November January
September December February
October January March
November February April
December March May
Payroll – Regular Remitters
People paid in Payment and filing due
January February 15
February March 15
March April 15
April May 15
May June 15
June July 15
July August 15
August September 15
September October 15
October November 15
November December 15
December January 15
  • What happens if I am late filing or paying?
    • You need to file as soon as possible.
    • If you do not have the money to pay then you can make arrangements in good faith with the CRA before they call you – they are much easier on you if you show the initiative to fix your mistakes.
    • If you are really behind – like years – then discuss it with your accountant – arrangements can be made to help minimize the effects of late filing, interest and penalties.
      • Before you can file you will need a bookkeeper or accountant to figure out that you should have paid and sometimes filing all years at once makes sense, sometimes as soon as you get each year done- your accountant or bookkeeper will come up with a plan.
    • Remember that GST and Payroll money are trust money and will need to be paid in full even if you go through bankruptcy.  Get this sorted out as soon as possible and hopefully limit the problem.
    • Having a good bookkeeper will keep you on track – we make sure that our clients are caught up and things are filed on time.  We will help make sure you have paid on time and filings are up to date.

If you have any questions about your CRA deadlines or to help keep you or get you on track, please contact us