Tax filing deadlines US and Canada -

The deadlines coming up have left my life in a mess here. 

I am so far behind that I expect to file over 100 US extensions in the next 6 days.

Here are the deadlines for our clients filing Canadian and US returns

April 15, 2008     US citizens or US residents in the USA for their 1040, 1040NR and most state returns..

I am not going to get 100 or so done by April 15th.  I will file a form 4868 for an automatic extension.  We will also be finishing another 75 or so in the next 6 days (there are 4 1/2 of us here).  we will automatically file an extension for each one of these because they are being couriered out to places like Ne York, San Francisco, Houston, Kansas City, Tulsa, San Diego, Hyattsville, Newark, Boston, Hawaii, etc.  To avoid possible late 'filing' penalties, we will send in an extension as we mail or courier the return off.

April 20, 2008    Some State tax returns such as Hawaii - check your state.

April 30, 2008   Canadian employee returns - Does not employee if either member of a  married, civil or other marital type union is self-employed part or full time.

June 15, 2008     Deadline for US filers living outside the physical United States. US filers in Dubai, Saudi, Greenland, Indonesia, Japan, and Canada, etc need to file by June 15th to avoid late filing penalties. Note that if you owe tax, late 'paying' penalties and interest will apply from April 15.  If installments were supposed to have been made, there will also be installment interest assessed.

June 15, 2008   Deadline for Canadian returns for both spouses when one or both is self-employed.  If you owe tax, interest will apply from April 30th.

But let me make a point.  even if you owe $10,000 and the penalty for late paying is 2%, that is only $200.00 

I might charge you 5 x's that much for priority processing to meet the deadline.  Far far far better to file an extension.
Why are we so late?

Every return is taking half an hour to two hours longer and I have never seen a year when we have done so many returns two or even three ways.

For instance, A couple leaving Washington state are saving over $4,000 because in the year of  leaving, they have to file a dual status return in this case.  A dual status return without making an election to include world income cannot be a joint return.  By filing two MFS returns and splitting the husband's W2 between both people, they are saving over $4,000 in tax.  To understand why we split the W-2, you have to understand community property rules.  If you look at pages 8, 9 and 10 of Publication 555, you will get the idea. 

See pages 8, 9 and 10 at:

In another case, moving to the US with three kids and electing to file a Joint return with 10 months of Canadian income added to the US return resulted in over $4,000 more refund because they were able to claim the full Child tax benefits of $1,000 per child even though there was only 2 months of US income. 

In other cases, different US tax rates on qualified dividends and different Canadian rates on Eligible dividends and the different capital gains tax rates are wrecking havoc with my foreign tax credit calculations.

This year, when real estate has collapsed in most of the US, I have been swamped with taxable home sales as US citizens in Canada have sold their Canadian homes with big profits and owe anywhere from $54,000 to $300,000 in tax to the IRS on the sale of their Canadian home.

Anyway, file your extensions and take it easy if you have not got your return finished yet.  this is not the time to expect the best service from your tax overworked preparer.  I got 1 1/2 hours of sleep on Sunday night and I am not going to do that again  - life is too short

find US form 4868 at

And remember, if you send in money with the 4868, it will stop any late paying penalties on that amount so make a guess and send it in.

Since Canada's CRA has not become sophisticated enough to come up with the equivalent of a 4868, you have to file an actual tax return to avoid an actual late filing penalty.

File a partial return with PROFORMA written on it.  Proforma means that one or more figures is guessed at and not accurate.  Then, as soon as possible, finish the return after April 30th and send in a form T1-Adj to bring the final figures up to date.

Do NOT expect it to be dealt with immediately.  On June 15, 2006  I sent in a PROFORMA 2005 Canadian return for a fellow the with  a $272,000 US W2 (lived in Canada, worked in the US), a Canadian Proprietorship and a US rental house.  We then sent in an amendment with a T1-ADJ on October 10, 2006 when we finally got all the information for this gentleman who was working in the US, Canada and Asia.

The CRA finally sent a reassessment for the 2005 return on March 10, 2008.

So, if we file an extension for your return, you will know why but I guarantee you will get a better job if we finish it in a reasonable and timely fashion than if we stay up 23 hours a day and finish it off bleary eyed to catch a April 15th Midnight artificial deadline.

Remember, BE ALERT, the World needs more "LERTS".


On April 6. 2008, David Ingram wrote:

It is very unlikely that blind or unexpected email to me will be answered.  I receive anywhere from 100 to 700  unsolicited emails a day and usually answer anywhere from 2 to 20 if they are not from existing clients.  Existing clients are advised to put their 'name and PAYING CUSTOMER' in the subject line and get answered first.  I also refuse to be a slave to email and do not look at it every day and have never ever looked at it when I am out of town. 
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However, I regularly search for the words"PAYING CUSTOMER" and always answer them first if they did not get spammed out. For the last two weeks, I have just found out that my own email notes to myself have been spammed out and as an example, as I wrote this on Dec 25, 2007 since June 16th, my 'spammed out' box has 47,941 unread messages, my deleted box has 16645 I have actually looked at and deleted and I have actually answered 1234 email questions for clients and strangers without sending a bill.  I have also put aside 847 messages that I am maybe going to try and answer because they look interesting. -e bankruptcy expert  US Canada Canadian American  Mexican Income Tax service and  help
Therefore, if an email is not answered in 24 to 48 hours, it is likely lost in space.  You can try and resend it but if important AND YOU TRULY WANT OR NEED AN ANSWER from 'me', you will have to phone to make an appointment.  Gillian Bryan generally accepts appointment requests for me between 10:30 AM and 4:00 PM Monday to Friday VANCOUVER (Seattle, Portland, Los Angeles) time at (604) 980-0321.  david ingram expert  US Canada Canadian American  Mexican Income Tax  service and help.
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Disclaimer:  This question has been answered without detailed information or consultation and is to be regarded only as general comment.   Nothing in this message is or should be construed as advice in any particular circumstances. No contract exists between the reader and the author and any and all non-contractual duties are expressly denied. All readers should obtain formal advice from a competent and appropriately qualified legal practitioner or tax specialist for expert help, assistance, preparation, or consultation  in connection with personal or business affairs such as at If you forward this message, this disclaimer must be included." e bankruptcy expert  US Canada Canadian American  Mexican Income Tax  service and help.
David Ingram gives expert income tax service & immigration help to non-resident Americans & Canadians from New York to California to Mexico  family, estate, income trust trusts Cross border, dual citizen - out of country investments are all handled with competence & authority - dual citizenship
Phone consultations are $450 for 15 minutes to 50 minutes (professional hour). Please note that GST is added if product remains in Canada or is to be returned to Canada or a phone consultation is in Canada. ($472.50 with GST if in Canada) expert  US Canada Canadian American  Mexican Income Tax  service and help.
This is not intended to be definitive but in general I am quoting $900 to $3,000 for a dual country tax return.
$900 would be one T4 slip one W2 slip one or two interest slips and you lived in one country only (but were filing both countries) - no self employment or rentals or capital gains - you did not move into or out of the country in this year.
$1,200 would be the same with one rental
$1,300 would be the same with one business no rental
$1,300 would be the minimum with a move in or out of the country. These are complicated because of the back and forth foreign tax credits. - The IRS says a foreign tax credit takes 1 hour and 53 minutes.
$1,600 would be the minimum with a rental or two in the country you do not live in or a rental and a business and foreign tax credits  no move in or out

$1,700 would be for two people with income from two countries

$3,000 would be all of the above and you moved in and out of the country.
This is just a guideline for US / Canadian returns
We will still prepare Canadian only (lives in Canada, no US connection period) with two or three slips and no capital gains, etc. for $200.00 up.
With a Rental for $400, two or three rentals for $550 to $700 (i.e. $150 per rental) First year Rental - plus $250.
A Business for $400 - Rental and business likely $550 to $700
And an American only (lives in the US with no Canadian income or filing period) with about the same things in the same range with a little bit more if there is a state return.
Moving in or out of the country or part year earnings in the US will ALWAYS be $900 and up.
TDF 90-22.1 forms are $50 for the first and $25.00 each after that when part of a tax return.
8891 forms are generally $50.00 to $100.00 each.
18 RRSPs would be $900.00 - (maybe amalgamate a couple)
Capital gains *sales)  are likely $50.00 for the first and $20.00 each after that.

Catch - up returns for the US where we use the Canadian return as a guide for seven years at a time will be from $150 to $600.00 per year depending upon numbers of bank accounts, RRSP's, existence of rental houses, self employment, etc. Note that these returns tend to be informational rather than taxable.  In fact, if there are children involved, we usually get refunds of $1,000 per child per year for 3 years.  We have done several catch-ups where the client has received as much as $6,000 back for an $1,800 bill and one recently with 6 children is resulting in over $12,000 refund. 

This is a guideline not etched in stone.  If you do your own TDF-90 forms, it is to your advantage. However, if we put them in the first year, the computer carries them forward beautifully.
This from "ask an income trusts tax service and immigration expert" from or or David Ingram deals on a daily basis with expatriate tax returns with multi jurisdictional cross and trans border expatriate problems  for the United States, Canada, Mexico, Great Britain, United Kingdom, Kuwait, Dubai, Saudi Arabia, Thailand, Indonesia, Japan, China, New Zealand, France, Germany, Spain, Italy, Russia, Georgia, Brazil, Peru, Ecuador, Bolivia, Scotland, Ireland, Hawaii, Florida, Montana, Morocco, Israel, Iraq, Iran, India, Pakistan, Afghanistan, Mali, Bangkok, Greenland, Iceland, Cuba, Bahamas, Bermuda, Barbados, St Vincent, Grenada,, Virgin Islands, US, UK, GB, and any of the 43 states with state tax returns, etc. Rockwall, Dallas, San Antonio Houston, Denmark, Finland, Sweden Norway Bulgaria Croatia Income Tax and Immigration Tips, Income Tax  Immigration Wizard Antarctica Rwanda Guru  Consultant Specialist Section 216(4) 216(1) NR6 NR-6 NR 6 Non-Resident Real Estate tax specialist expert preparer expatriate anti money laundering money seasoning FINTRAC E677 E667 105 106 TDF-90 Reporting $10,000 cross border transactions Grand Cayman Aruba Zimbabwe South Africa Namibia help USA US Income Tax Convention. Advice on bankruptcy  e bankruptcy expert  US Canada Canadian American  Mexican Income Tax service and help .

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