The tax filing deadline for 2013 is April 30th and it is fast approaching. Did you start doing your taxes yet? Canadians are about to get a little more incentive to file taxes on time this year. Yesterday, the Government of Canada quietly passed a bill that will allow them to report any late tax submissions to credit bureaus – including any outstanding balance owing on taxes. For many years, millions of dollars was spent on promoting and educating Canadian families and individuals about filing their personal income taxes on time, but now they have a new arsenal to help nudge Canadians towards meeting it. According to the Finance Minister, any late tax submissions will automatically be recorded on credit reports and will directly affect Canadian credit scores. In order to avoid having bad credit, Canadians are encouraged to start doing their taxes as soon as they receive their T4s. Oh by the way, I forgot to mention that today is April 1st. April Fools!
Actually, with this post, the point I wanted to make was that we should check our annual credit reports at the same time we do our taxes. As we complete our taxes and report our earnings for the year, we should also remind ourselves about our debts and credits. Take a moment from your busy schedule and invest in a healthy credit score. Request for your Canadian credit report, review it, and make sure everything that you see is accurate. If I had my way, I would create a campaign to increase awareness about the important of these documents and how much financial data is stored on it.
Much like how we are reminded to renew our driver’s license on our birthdays or how we change the batteries in our smoke alarms with the daylight savings times, checking your credit report should be done in line with taxes. Why? It’s actually a pretty good time to review it. It is right after the Christmas spending season and usually a slow time for most families. If unauthorized charges credit charges were to appear it would be now!