Tax Checklist For Canadian Tax Filers (Free PDF Download)

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Free download of Tax Checklist for Canadian tax filers. Contains the important tax documents you need to file your taxes

If you file your own taxes, you understand how cumbersome the whole process can be. With over 400 tax credits and deductions, filing your taxes can quickly get cumbersome.

To ensure you’re paying the right tax amount, it is important to have a tax checklist that helps you track all your income, expenses, and deductions you qualify for.

Whether you’re filing your taxes yourself or using a professional, the sample tax checklist below will be helpful.

What You’ll Need To Get Started With Filing Your Taxes

General Information

To begin filing your taxes, you’ll need the following information

  • Your Personal information: Social Insurance Number, date of birth, marital status and so on
  • Spouse and other dependents information: SIN, date of birth and net income
  • Last year’s return
  • Last year’s Notice of Assessment/Reassessment
  • Other correspondence with CRA

The previous year’s notice of assessment will come handy when preparing your taxes. It has information about any unused deductions from last year, such as moving expenses, tuition, losses and capital cost allowance.

Income and Expenses

Make sure you’re reporting all your income. You will get a tax slip for some of them, for example T4 for employment income.

And depending on when you’re preparing your taxes, CRA may have the details on their records already so you can use Auto-fill to pull all the information into the tax software you’re using.

Some of your expenses may be tax deductible, that is you can use them to reduce your taxable income. Tax deductions and credits vary from one taxpayer to another, depending on their personal situation, province of residence and so on.

The checklist below is a good starting point and will cover the applicable tax deductions for most taxpayers, but you should also check that you don’t have any other one you’re missing.

Related Post: 5 ways to reduce your tax

Tax Checklist for Canadians

Tax Slips

  • T4 – Employment Income
  • T4A – Pension and annuity income
  • T4E – Employment insurance benefits
  • T4A(P) and T4A(OAS) – CPP and OAS slips
  • T3 – Income from a trust
  • T5 – investment income like dividends or interest
  • T5008 – Securities transactions
  • T2202 or TL11 – Tuition
  • T5007 – Social assistance payments and worker’s compensation
  • T5013 – Partnership Income
  • T4RSP – RRSP Income
  • T4RIF – RIF Income
  • All other relevant tax slips


  • RRSP contribution
  • Childcare expenses
  • Medical expenses
  • Children’s fitness and arts expenses (Manitoba, Yukon)
  • Adoption expenses
  • Charitable donations
  • Political contributions
  • Moving Expenses
  • Student loan interest
  • Rent / property tax receipts (Ontario and Manitoba)
  • Annual union or professional dues (if not on T4)
  • Exam fees for professional certifications
  • Transit pass receipts (Ontario seniors)
  • Tool expenses (Tradespersons & Apprentice mechanics)
  • School supply expenses (Teachers)
  • Carrying charges and interest expenses
  • Employment expenses & form T2200
  • Home accessibility expenses (for seniors, age 65+, or those eligible for disability tax credit)
  • Legal expenses to collect alimony, pension or retiring allowance
  • Support payments made
  • Personal Attendant/ facility care expenses

Related Post: Tax Credit vs Tax Deduction – what is the difference?

Tax Filing Information

  • Your Personal information
  • Last year’s Notice of Assessment/Reassessment
  • Last year’s tax return
  • Other correspondence with CRA

Other Documentations

  • Sale or deemed sale of stocks, bonds, or real estate
  • Farm or fishing income and expenses
  • Rental property income and expenses
  • Volunteer firefighters’ certification
  • Disability Tax Credit Certificate
  • Search and rescue volunteer certificate
  • Northern residents’ information
  • Self-employed and commissioned employees
    • Income and expenses
    • Vehicle logbook and expenses
    • In-home office expenses
  • Capital gains information
  • Custody arrangement documentation
  • Home buyers’ plan and lifelong learning plan information
  • Business investment loss information
  • Dependant’s information like birthday and net income

You can download the tax checklist as a PDF by subscribing to our mailing list below.

Subscribe to download the Tax Checklist

Why Should You Use A Tax Checklist?

Here are a few benefits of using a tax checklist

  • Maximize your refund by claiming all eligible expenses and deductions you are entitled for. A Tax Checklist minimizes the chance of missing out or forgetting to claim a deduction.
  • Stay Organized: Gather all the documents you need to file your taxes and arrange them in a file that’s big enough to hold all the documents – or digitize them but make sure they are filed in a secured location. CRA recommends that taxpayers should keep their tax records for 6 years.

How to Estimate How Much You Will Pay in Taxes

If you need to get a rough estimate of what your tax is going to be and the refund to expect from CRA, you can use either of the tax calculators linked below.

  1. Wealthsimple Tax Calculator
  2. TurboTax Calculator

Simply select your province and provide your income, deductions and any tax amount already paid.

See the sample below using the tax calculator from Wealthsimple Tax:

Wealthsimple Tax calculator

Again, remember that whatever figure you get is just an estimate.

Your actual tax for the year, and refund if any, can only be determined after you’ve completed your tax returns using a NETFILE certified tax software.

Related Post: Keep More Of Your Income And Reduce Your Tax Refund

Final Thoughts

We believe everyone will benefits from using a tax checklist. Even if you are going to use a tax professional for your taxes, they will appreciate getting a set of organized document and information from you.

If you are planning to file your taxes yourself, check out this list of free tax software available to Canadians.


Simon is a CPA by day and a Personal Finance Blogger by night. With over a decade experience in financial services, he's passionate about personal finance, investing and helping people take control of their financial life.

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