Canada taxman makes move on Panama Papers

Canada taxman makes move on Panama Papers

Canada taxman makes move on Panama Papers After news broke of various Canadians being named in the Panama Papers controversy there has been little hesitation among tax collectors in the country.

According to a report at the Toronto Star, Revenue Minister Diane Lebouthillier quickly urged officials from the Canada Revenue Agency to get their hands on the information contained within the papers. Speaking to the publication, spokeswoman Chloe Luciani-Girouard commented that the Minister “has instructed CRA officials to obtain the list of data leaked through Panama Papers in order to cross-reference this information with data already being obtained through the agency’s existing mechanisms.”

The spokeswoman claimed that the Minister was following the documents “very closely” as the agency remains “committed to combating the abusive use of offshore jurisdictions”.

According to reports, there are around 350 Canadians listed in the database and while there is no law against having foreign investments it is necessary for Canadians to report any income they earn outside the country with the Canada Revenue Agency.

The spokeswoman claimed that the agency has been collecting information on all international fund transfers that surpass $10,000 and that it selects the taxpayers deemed to be the “highest risk” in order to carry out reviews and audits.

However, despite the spokeswoman’s claims that the agency has had success in correcting non-compliance, Senator Percy Downe told the publication that Canada’s problem with tax evasion overseas is actually “massive” and is no longer just a problem among the wealthy as it is now popular among the upper middle classes too.

What are your thoughts on the Panama Papers controversy and the involvement of many Canadians? Leave a comment below with your thoughts.
  • Michael J Dumond CFP ChFC CLU TEP 2016-04-06 11:47:37 AM
    If the information in the Panama papers leak is not acquired by CRA by legal means then the information should not be admessable or usable.
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  • Thom. C.J. Young 2016-04-06 2:00:54 PM
    I just checked and I'm not on the list. Whew!!

    The majority of those with foreign investments are playing by the rules. They either declare their income in Canada or declare their income in the foreign jurisdiction or in some cases do both. Tax cheats and dodgers come in all sizes, successful people though normally get to their position in life by playing by the rules. Anyone who thinks otherwise is confusing good people with criminals who don't follow any rules in or out of their country.

    One thing is certain though, people will invest and pay tax where they get the best bang for their buck and under our laws, so long as they declare their income and file a tax return in the jurisdiction they earned the money in they're not breaking any rules or acting outside of the law.
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