Nearly a third of the participants on the Million Dollar Neighbourhood
TV series made errors on their returns
CALGARY, Jan. 23, 2012 /CNW/ - It is only the first episode of Million Dollar Neighbourhood on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network (Canada), but thousands of Canadians may
have money hidden in their tax returns. H&R Block's Second LookSM review of tax returns in Aldergrove, B.C., resulted in an additional
$50,000 in tax refunds. H&R Block tax professionals found nearly one
third of the participants missed credits or deductions and, of the
taxpayers with refunds, the average amount was $1,571.
Million Dollar Neighbourhood is a new original series offering an unprecedented social experiment
set in Aldergrove in which 100 families have only 10 weeks to raise
their collective net worth by $1 million. The first episode aired
January 22, featuring H&R Block tax specialists in a segment.
"For most taxpayers, receiving a Notice of Assessment means their tax
return is approved, but it doesn't mean you claimed everything you are
entitled to," says Cleo Hamel, senior tax analyst, H&R Block Canada.
"In our experience in Aldergrove, we uncovered missed credits and
deductions that resulted in refunds from $100 to more than $10,000."
When asked in a recent Leger Marketing poll for H&R Block what they
would do with an extra $1,500, Canadians most commonly said they would
pay off debt (47 per cent) or save it (39 per cent). One in 10
Canadians would use it to take a vacation or go shopping.
The same poll revealed that 36 per cent of Canadians said they have been
contacted by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) about changes to their tax
return. Out of the people who were contacted by the CRA, 44 per cent of
them owed more money as a result of the change.
When asked if they would let a tax professional review their previous
year's return for free, 57 per cent of Canadians were open to the idea.
Once told about the $50,000 in tax refunds found in Aldergrove, the
number of people who were open to a free review increased to 72 per
Pen and paper was identified as the method more likely to result in an
error, at 55 per cent. As for the method that results in the best
refund, Canadians most commonly said an accountant, with tax software
"The Aldergrove sample size is not large enough to draw conclusions
from, but it is interesting that the majority of returns we filed
adjustments for were prepared using accountants or tax software,"
explains Hamel. "We always advise that no matter how you prepare your
tax return, it is important to understand the credits and benefits you
are entitled to claim. And if you have missed a credit, the money is
not lost. You can file an adjustment so you don't pay any more tax than
If you think you have missed a deduction or credit, you can have a free
Second Look at H&R Block. A tax professional will review up to three
years of your previous returns for free to ensure you claimed
The survey was completed on-line from December 5th, 2011 to December
7th, 2011, using Leger Marketing's online panel, LegerWeb, with a sample of 1,501 Canadians, 18 years of age or older. A
probability sample of the same size would yield a margin of error of
+/- 2.5%, 19 times out of 20.
Million Dollar Neighbourhood airs Sundays at 8 p.m. ET and is produced by Force Four Entertainment
Inc. in association with Corus Entertainment's OWN: Oprah Winfrey
About H&R Block Canada
H&R Block Canada has been preparing taxes for more than 45 years and is
Canada's leading tax preparation firm. Headquartered in Calgary,
Alberta, the company serves Canadian taxpayers in more than 1,100
offices across the country. H&R Block Canada Inc. is a subsidiary of
H&R Block, Inc., a diversified company with subsidiaries providing a
wide range of financial products and services. Additional information
about H&R Block Canada is available at 1-800-HRBLOCK or visit www.hrblock.ca for more tax tips.
For further information:
(416) 925-6034 x 22