Wednesday 9 June 2010

Canadian TaxPayers' Ombudsman Office

Fellow blogger Michael James' post today about his hassles with the Canada Revenue Agency reminded me that I received an email recently from a relatively new government service for aggrieved Canadian taxpayers - the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman.

Here is a chunk of their email to me:
"Canada’s Taxpayer Bill of Rights was expanded in 2007 to include eight service rights. Mr. J. Paul Dubé was appointed as Canada’s first Taxpayers' Ombudsman in February 2008 to uphold these eight service rights by ensuring that taxpayers get professional service and fair treatment from the CRA.

In that light, the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman plays an important new role by providing independent and impartial reviews of complaints about how the CRA serves and treats taxpayers. The Office also addresses systemic problems that affect large numbers of taxpayers.

Attached is an electronic version of our Interim Report as well as our first Annual Report. As they demonstrate, the activities of the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman have already resulted in a number of disputes between taxpayers and the CRA being resolved. It provides a few examples of the types of cases in which we have made a difference in the lives of taxpayers. As a result of our intervention, the CRA has:

* issued apologies;
* released bank accounts they had seized;
* cancelled penalties and interest they were charging;
* reviewed some of its internal policies and procedures; and
* in some instances, ended collection activities.
Additional information is available at:" The complaint form can be downloaded here.


Jordan said...

I think the idea of a Tax Payer's Bill of Rights is awesome, I just have a feeling it doesn't affect the day to day actions of CRA agents in how they handle disputes.

Have you had direct dealings with the CRA where you have claimed one of your or your client's rights has been violated and the agent has acknowledged it and corrected the action on their own?

Jordan said...

Sorry, forgot to hit subscribe to follow up comments.

CanadianInvestor said...

Jordan, I can only speak for my own dealings with CRA but my experience is that they will ask for some things that defy common sense, citing their rules and procedures. I'll post about my own little story of an issue that makes unnecessary extra work for me and for them, yet they do it anyways even when in speaking to individuals in CRA, they admit the craziness of the situation.

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