SUISSE news Spring 2018
Banking / Financial
May 2018

The End of the Voluntary Disclosure Program?

(Wayne Bewick)

Based on the recommendations of the Offshore Compliance Advisory Committee (OCAC), a revised Voluntary Disclosure Program (VDP) came into effect on March 1st, 2018, in an effort to narrow the eligibility criteria, making it more difficult for those who have intentionally avoided their tax obligations to take advantage or seek benefits under VDP.

Current VDP guidelines allow Canadians who know they have made mistakes on their previous tax returns, from at least one year prior, to come forward and notify the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) of their misfiled documents. They can then make the appropriate changes to the information without fear of prosecution.  The proposed changes would drastically change these policies, including:

  • Cracking down on major cases of non-compliance and providing less relief in such cases
  • Adding payment of taxes owed as a condition to qualify for the VDP 
  • Canceling VDP relief for any applications that are found to be incomplete due to willful misrepresentation
  • Making corporations with more than $250 million in gross revenue and/or any whose application involves transfer pricing, excluded from VDP relief 
  • Changes the calculation of interest relief that accepted applications are eligible for
  • Ending VDP relief for applications involving proceeds from criminal acts
The new program will also place applicants in one of two categories:
  1. the general program, which allows full penalty relief and partial interest relief, or
  2. the limited program, for cases of major non-compliance usually citing willful negligence and fault on the part of the taxpayer, which would only qualify the applicant for some reduced relief.
To fully understand the impact of these proposed changes on your tax strategy, please visit the CRA’s website or connect with a Trowbridge professional for personalized consulting and solutions at

TROWBRIDGE Professional Corporation is a Canadian accounting firm that specializes in international tax services including a wide range of corporate and expatriate tax services to Canadian and foreign-based individuals and corporations. TROWBRIDGE is an independent member of the Global Tax Network (GTN). 

CRA and IRS Tax Scams on the Rise

Many Canadians have fallen prey to seemingly realistic calls and threatening e-mails claiming to be from the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) asking for recipients to take immediate action or face severe consequences. 

Protect yourself by being on alert for convincing phone calls and voice recordings stating that you have been identified for aggressive collection and if you do not return the call and take action, a warrant for your arrest will be issued.
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