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Employee awards now tax exempt (March 01, 2002)

OTTAWA, Ont. - The Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA) has issued an advisory stating certain employee awards are now tax-free.Canada's many provincial associations, in conjunction with the Canad...


OTTAWA, Ont. – The Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (CCRA) has issued an advisory stating certain employee awards are now tax-free.

Canada’s many provincial associations, in conjunction with the Canadian Trucking Alliance, have been calling for a change to federal taxation governing safety awards and other non-cash bonuses for some time. Under the new policy, employers will be able to give employees two non-cash gifts per year, on a tax-free basis. These can be for special occasions, or in recognition of employment achievements, such as meeting or exceeding safety standards or other milestones – where the aggregate cost of the awards to the employer is $500 or less.

The employer will still be able to deduct the costs of these gifts/awards when calculating business income. The policy is effective for 2001 and later years. However, Bill Keith, a spokesperson with a fleet out of P.E.I. indicates not everyone will be satisfied with the adjustment.

“Revenue Canada comes up short again,” he insists. “My safety award exceeds $500 by a long shot. This is no big deal and will do very little to attract safe, professional drivers into the industry.”


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