Red tape reduction at the CRA: reducing the compliance burden for Canadian businesses

What is red tape?

For the purposes of the Red Tape Reduction Commission, red tape is defined as the unnecessary and undue compliance burden: the time and resources spent by business to demonstrate compliance with the federal government regulations.

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Top 10 Ways our Government has Reduced Red Tape for Businesses at the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA)

  1. We have simplified payroll remittance: we made a simple change to tax administration that allows more than 50,000 small businesses to file their payroll taxes less often.

  2. The Business Tax Reminders app, allows businesses to create custom reminders and alerts for dates related to instalment payments, returns, and remittances.

  3. My Business Account lets businesses interact with the CRA like never before! Through this self-serve tool, businesses can receive certain correspondence and submit documents to the CRA online. Businesses can now complete 50 different kinds of simplified transactions online with the CRA.

  4. Businesses now have more freedom to manage their affairs online: update banking and direct deposit information through My Business Account.

  5. Enhanced auditor training was developed and the CRA created a dedicated team to address the needs of businesses. This is to ensure that the CRA considers the small and medium business perspective before making changes to programs and policies.

  6. It’s now easier for businesses to find clear and understandable information—My Business Account Enquiries Service allows businesses to ask tax questions related to their account online, and receive information they can rely on, in writing.

  7. Telephone service agents working with businesses are now required to provide an AgentID. This AgentID increases accountability by ensuring a consistent and user-friendly experience for callers and makes it easier for business owners to give feedback on CRA services.

  8. The Business Number (BN) allows businesses to be identified by one number while working with federal, provincial, and municipal governments. One number and a business can work with nine provinces and a number of programs with the CRA, Public Works and Government Services, Industry Canada, and Canada Border Services Agency.

  9. The recently introduced Liaison Officer Initiative (LOI) reduces the administrative burden by helping businesses to meet their tax obligations and “get it right from the start”. The LOI provides in-person support to businesses when they need it most at key points of their business cycle.

  10. We are committed to consulting with businesses every two years to ensure the CRA’s action plans align with the priorities of small and medium businesses. These ongoing discussions provide a positive opportunity for small businesses to share their thoughts and ideas.

For more information, go to The CRA’s history of red tape reduction 2011-2013.

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