Friday, March 2, 2012

It's Income Tax season

Yup, here it is again.
Time to let the tax man know how little money we have left after he's done with us.
It's pathetic really, how much tax we pay for how little return we actually see.
Realistically speaking, I suppose we do get a lot for our dollar.  But with our health care system in the disarray that we are all feeling, and our social programs being abused as they are, it's really difficult to want to pay taxes to support such efforts.
My personal bitch is the amount of tax seniors pay on their limited incomes.  Now that is pathetic!  I truly believe that our seniors, who have contributed to society all their lives, should be exempt from all taxes on the first $60,000.00 of income (that would take care of a good many of our senior population).  Any seniors with income over that threshold can well afford to continue paying a tax share on the income that exceeds that level.
But that's not the way Canada's taxman sees things.  And taxes we must pay.
So every year at this time, I hunker down and crunch the numbers.
I've always found tax filing fairly easy, unlike most people I know who can't get their heads around it.
For as long as I was in the work world, I always prepared income tax returns for my co-workers.  I remember at one point, it was joked that perhaps we should put a "take a number" system outside my door at tax time.
Of course, once I retired, the number of returns I prepared dwindled considerably.
But with the rise of the internet and the ease of transferring files, last year it grew again when my sister in Waterloo asked for tax advice. Before I knew it, I was filing returns for her, her husband and their daughter.  (I think this year I'm gaining another daughter's return too.)
I also still do a good friend's return, as well as her husband's.  I used to do all three of her children's returns but they've all grown and moved on.
My little chickadee mastered the task some years ago so she does her families' returns, but not without several calls to Mom to clarify situations.
I'm not sure how it came about that I garnered all the tax knowledge that I carry around in my head -- be it from my work history or just personal interest.  But tax knowledge I have.  Even stuff that has no relevance to me is filed away in my memory bank.
People used to ask me how I knew the stuff I know about our tax system and the only answer I could give them was, "I read a lot."  And truth be known, I guess that is precisely where I got the knowledge.  It seems that I migrate to any printed matter about taxation.  The subject, for whatever reason, fascinates me.
So I've become everyone's "tax expert."
As the saying goes,  "A little learning is a dangerous thing."

1 comment:

Heather and Kathy said...

I am not fond of paying taxes either. Although on my social security, I don't pay any so that is a good thing.