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Cryptocurrency and your tax return

Bitcoin is a hot topic, especially now that tax season is here. We’ve been getting a ton of questions about cryptocurrency and your tax return, like:

  1. Do I need to report my cryptocurrency gains? (hint: yes, if you’ve sold or traded it)
  2. How do I report my income/gain/loss?
  3. What about mining?
  4. What if I accept cryptocurrency as payment?
  5. Do I need to file form T1135?
  6. What if I don’t report my cryptocurrency income?

We’ve written an in-depth help post that covers these common questions (and more). Even if you didn’t sell or trade any cryptocurrency last year, we recommend checking it out to avoid any surprises down the line.

Hodl on.

Get started on your 2017 tax return

It's almost tax season—hooray! This year, Auto-fill my return opens on February 12th and NETFILE follows on February 26th.

If that's just too long to wait (because you love working on your tax return), we've updated our Canadian tax return checklist to help you gather your tax information. On top of that, SimpleTax 2017 is up and running so you can start today.

Our 2017 checklist includes all of the slips, receipts, and documents you might need and highlights which of those are available through Auto-fill. We recommend signing up for CRA My Account so you can benefit from Auto-fill; it's awesome.

This year there were many federal, provincial, and territorial tax changes. While the list is long, none of these changes impact how you use SimpleTax. If there's something you need to know (e.g., that you can only claim public transit receipts for half the year) we point it out in the app.

Here's a list of most of the changes1, sorted by province or territory, if you're curious.

  • Caregiver amounts
    • Federal: The new Canada caregiver amount replaces and consolidates three former related credits.2 Despite the fancy new moniker, the only major change is that you can no longer claim a federal tax credit for non-infirm senior parents who live with you.
    • Alberta: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • British Columbia: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Manitoba: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • New Brunswick: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Newfoundland: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Northwest Territories: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Nova Scotia: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Nunavut: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Ontario: The new Ontario caregiver amount replaces two former caregiver credits and is similar to the Canada caregiver amount (in that non-infirm senior parents no longer qualify).
    • Prince Edward Island: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Québec: Rate changes only.
    • Saskatchewan: No change (report those non-infirm senior parents who live with you because you still qualify for a provincial credit).
    • Yukon: caregiver credits have followed the federal changes.
  • Fitness & arts amounts
    • Federal: The children's fitness and arts amounts were eliminated.
    • British Columbia: Children's fitness & arts expenses are still eligible for a BC tax credit.
    • Manitoba: Children's and young adult fitness & arts expenses are still eligible for a Manitoba tax credit.
    • Québec: Children's fitness & arts expenses are still eligible for a Québec tax credit.
    • Yukon: Children's fitness & arts expenses are still eligible for a Yukon tax credit.
    • Ontario: The Ontario children's activity credit was eliminated.
  • Tuition amounts
    • Federal: You can still claim your tuition paid as a tax credit but the education and textbook amounts were eliminated.
    • Manitoba: You can still claim both the provincial tuition and education amounts.
    • Manitoba: The maximum graduate tuition fee income tax rebate (a refundable credit) was reduced to $500 (from $2,500) per year.
    • Manitoba: The advance tuition fee income tax rebate was eliminated as of May 1, 2017.
    • New Brunswick: Both the tuition and education amounts were completely eliminated.
    • Ontario: Both the tuition and education amounts were completely eliminated for studies after September 5, 2017.
    • Saskatchewan: Both the tuition and education amounts were completely eliminated for studies on or after July 1, 2017.
  • Public transit amount
    • Federal: The public transit amount was eliminated for trips taken on or after July 1.
    • Ontario: Seniors are eligible for the new Ontario seniors public transit credit for trips taken starting July 1.
  • Labour-sponsored funds credit
    • Federal: The credit for federally registered funds was eliminated.
  • Alberta:
    • Introduced a new Alberta investor credit.
  • British Columbia:
    • Introduced a volunteer firefighter and search & rescue volunteer credit.
    • Eliminated the back-to-school amount.
  • Manitoba:
    • Eliminated the odour-control credit & the nutrient management credit for expenditures after April 11, 2017.
  • Ontario:
    • Eliminated the healthy homes renovation credit.
  • Québec:
    • Introduced new credits for: upgrading residential waste water treatment systems, and restoring a secondary residence that was impacted by the floods.
    • Eliminated the health contribution.
  • Saskatchewan:
    • Eliminated the one-time trade entry tools tax credit.

1 This list only includes credits and deductions that have been introduced or eliminated, it doesn't include any changes to tax rates or tax brackets.

2 The "caregiver amount", the "amount for infirm dependants", and the "family caregiver amount".

Change to the Québec Health Premium

Yesterday’s Québec budget abolished the health contribution for low- and middle- income individuals. If your net income is below $134,095, you no longer need to pay the contribution. This change is retroactive to the 2016 tax year.

We’ve updated SimpleTax to reflect this new rule!

  • If you haven’t yet filed, your return will include the most up-to-date health contribution.

  • If you have already filed, you don’t need to do anything. Revenu Québec will automatically reassess you to take this change into account. In the meantime, if you want to see how this impacts you, log in to your return and click “Show Differences” in the Submit section.