Taxpayers' Ombudsman recommends CRA improve measures to address abusive tax shelter donation schemes

OTTAWA, March 19, 2014 /CNW/ - Canada's Taxpayers' Ombudsman, Mr. J. Paul Dubé, today released a report titled "Donor Beware" in which he called on the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to improve communications related to warning the public about tax shelter donation schemes. He also recommended that the CRA monitor trends in the structuring of, and investing in, questionable tax schemes and make such information available to the public in a timely manner.

Despite the CRA's efforts to stop abusive tax donation schemes and legislative changes to help it do so, these schemes continue to taint the charitable sector. Also, while the CRA has warned Canadians of the consequences of participating in such schemes, it is still seeing abusive schemes operating to which donors contribute either knowingly or unknowingly.

"Many complaints have been received by my office from taxpayers that were unaware of the tax consequences when they participated in abusive tax donation schemes," said Dubé. "That means, the CRA needs to improve overall communications on this issue including raising awareness of the consequences of participation in such schemes. Ultimately, these efforts will help prevent innocent individuals from falling victim to promoters of abusive tax donation schemes."

In his Special Report, Mr. Dubé puts forward a number of recommendations to address these problems and alleviate their impact on Canadians.

For more information about the Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman, or to read the Special Report, visit www.oto-boc.gc.ca.

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SOURCE Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman

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Media enquiries: 

Silvia Moscatel
Assistant to J. Paul Dubé, Taxpayers' Ombudsman
613-941-6294
Silvia.Moscatel@oto-boc.gc.ca