What tax returns should I be filing?

Filing your first corporate income tax return

All Canadian corporations (except registered charities) must file a corporation income tax (T2) return every tax year, even if nothing is owed. Unlike personal taxes, you have the ability to choose your corporate year-end date in your first year of business. It can be any date within the first 53 weeks after your incorporation date. 

For most startups, the deadlines can be a bit backward – taxes must be paid before the return is officially due. Your tax return is due six months after the year-end date, while any taxes payable are due three months after your year-end. We, therefore, recommend filing your tax return early so you know exactly how much is owed. 

You can view current corporate tax rates here. 

Filing GST/HST returns

If your business has worldwide, taxable sales of more than $30,000 during any four consecutive calendar quarters, you are required to be registered and file a GST/HST return. You can file it using CRA NETFILE service. This tax return reports your gross revenues, the GST/HST you collected and the GST/HST you paid, or income tax credits (ITCs) to the CRA.

Filing payroll deductions

Source deductions must be reported and remitted to the CRA on a tight schedule, which is set depending on the amount payable (see Frequency, below). Come tax time, employers must provide a payroll slip (T4) to all workers that records their salary and amounts deducted for the calendar year. Payroll returns must be filed with the CRA by the last day of February of the following year.