OTTAWA (LifeSiteNews) – The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) starting in 2024 will no longer allow citizens to pay tax debts over $10,000 by cheque and will mandate payment via electronic means under a new rule that is part of a federal omnibus budget bill likely to become law soon.
Since 1917, the CRA has allowed anyone with tax debt to pay by “cash or cheque,” but beginning next year payments of more than $10,000 will have to be done electronically. Many choose to pay larger debts by cheque because it is faster, easier and relatively secure.
According to CRA spokesperson Charles Drouin, the new policy will not “come into effect until January 1,” 2024.
“We will communicate additional details about the administration of this policy in due course,” he added.
However, Drouin confusingly noted that cheques will still be accepted when a payer “cannot reasonably remit or pay the amount” by direct deposit. This means that should one pay by cheque in 2024, it remains unclear if the CRA would honor that payment.
The CRA would not comment on what would happen to those who don’t abide by the new rules.
The federal government of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s omnibus budget Bill C-47 is currently being debated in the House of Commons. The bill includes the clause that will mandate electronic payment of taxes over $10,000.
As per Blacklock’s Reporter, Lindsay Gwyer, director general of tax policy with the Department of Finance, recently testified at a House of Commons finance committee meeting that the changes are “intended to make the process more efficient from the perspective of the government and from the Canada Revenue Agency’s perspective.”
“Large payments above $10,000 are required to be made electronically,” Gwyer said.
Some Conservative Party of Canada (CPC) MPs have questioned why getting rid of paying by cheque is needed.
CPC MP Marty Morantz said recently at a finance meeting, “This piece about having to pay electronically over $10,000, what if somebody doesn’t want to do that or doesn’t know how?”
“Why can’t they pay by cheque?” he asked.
Many Canadians pay taxes via large lump sum payments, which can be conveniently done by cheque. Most banking institutions have in place limits on how much money a person can send via an electronic funds transfer.
A survey from 2014 from the Department of Public Works showed that about 26% of Canadians are opposed to mandating payment electronically.
Forcing Canadians to pay via electronic funds transfer as opposed to cheque comes around the same time that governments worldwide are touting replacing cash with central bank digital currencies.
While Canadian banks thus far have not been hit with collapse like some banks in the United States in recent months, experts have warned that a financial crisis could spell the acceleration of the introduction of central bank digital currencies.
Digital currencies have been touted as a way by some government officials to replace traditional cash.
As noted in a recent report from LifeSiteNews, experts warn that central bank digital currencies are a “control tool” by the government.
“Government-backed digital currencies issued by a central bank. They can be issued to financial institutions or to the general public, effectively giving people a bank account the government can directly access, in an account held either by the government itself or a commercial bank,” the report read.