Personal Finance

Can a "non-resident" Canadian Citizen return to Canada?

  • Last Updated:
  • Mar 9th, 2015 2:22 pm
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Deal Addict
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Dec 28, 2011
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b1xvuk wrote:
Mar 6th, 2015 6:54 pm
No one wants to pay at least 75% tax ( approx tax of Us and Canada combined.
Ridiculous statement.
First you ask a question for which posters provided a reasonable comments and then you criticize them for it and post your own made up erroneous theories as facts.
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Jan 24, 2015
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Canadian in USA
b1xvuk wrote:
Mar 6th, 2015 7:11 pm
Not really.
No one knows what the future might hold. No one knows what if you decide you cant settle elsewhere and you want to move back. Not really smart to pay double taxes just because.

Theres hardly a 1st world country without tax except the Arabian gulf such as Dubai. Which i have been several times but have no plans to live there due to the extreme heat.
You are mixing up two different concepts: living somewhere else, and being a non-resident of Canada for tax purposes. These are not the same thing. You can live somewhere else, and be a resident of Canada for tax purposes. The whole idea of being a non-resident of Canada for tax purposes is to avoid paying Canadian tax, and while it is obviously related to the concept of living somewhere else, it's not the same thing at all.

In fact, quite a lot of people try and arrange to remain residents of Canada while living as much as they can somewhere else -- "snowbirds" typically worry about losing their Canadian health insurance, which is what would happen to them if they stayed outside the country long enough to be considered a non-resident. On the other hand, people like me who move away for work WANT to be considered a non-resident, because we don't want to pay Canadian tax -- but CRA may still try and argue that we are residents of Canada for tax purposes, even though we don't live in Canada, if they can claim we have "ties" to Canada.

A common example would be someone who lives in the United States but who is married to a Canadian resident -- outside of exceptional circumstances CRA will claim that the marriage tie to Canada makes that individual a resident of Canada, even if they live outside Canada for years.

Hopefully that helps you understand the answers people have been giving you.

The technically correct answer to your question in post 1 (a question I don't think YOU understood) is that there is nothing stopping a non-resident from becoming a resident again. If you do, CRA will begin taxing you from the day you resumed your Canadian residency. They will not retroactively tax you back through your non-resident period UNLESS they conduct an audit and argue that you were NEVER a non-resident, that in fact you were a resident the whole time. But if they accept that you were a non-resident, then they will not assess taxes for the time you were non-resident.

I hope this helps, and I also hope that in the future you take more time to read what people have been telling you, you got a lot of good answers to your question, which you dismissed due to your OWN misunderstanding of the situation. In the future people may be less willing to answer your questions in a helpful way if they see that as a pattern. Just saying.

But hopefully your question has been answered now?
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rj2wells wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 2:02 am
A common example would be someone who lives in the United States but who is married to a Canadian resident -- outside of exceptional circumstances CRA will claim that the marriage tie to Canada makes that individual a resident of Canada, even if they live outside Canada for years.
Its not a "common" example where CRA would act on it unless you mean the spouse lives in Canada during this period. 'they live" assumes both of them.
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Pointseeker wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 2:45 am
Its not a "common" example where CRA would act on it unless you mean the spouse lives in Canada during this period. 'they live" assumes both of them.
In this case my intended use of "they" is the singular third person gender neutral pronoun, not the plural.

A Canadian citizen working abroad whose spouse remains in Canada will almost always be deemed a factual resident of Canada for tax purposes.
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rj2wells wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 2:59 am
In this case my intended use of "they" is the singular third person gender neutral pronoun, not the plural.

A Canadian citizen working abroad whose spouse remains in Canada will almost always be deemed a factual resident of Canada for tax purposes.
What about agreements between 2 countries?
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Aug 27, 2004
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Pointseeker wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 1:49 pm
What about agreements between 2 countries?
You mean tax treaties?

Tax treaties are interesting reading material...
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Pointseeker wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 1:49 pm
What about agreements between 2 countries?

A tax treaty could do anything, but I don't believe any of the tax treaties we have today prevent CRA from declaring you a "factual resident of Canada" for tax purposes if you live outside Canada but your spouse lives in Canada.

Certainly the Canada/US tax treaty doesn't, as that is a common reason why Canadians working in the US get taxed by Canada.
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rj2wells wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 8:19 pm
A tax treaty could do anything, but I don't believe any of the tax treaties we have today prevent CRA from declaring you a "factual resident of Canada" for tax purposes if you live outside Canada but your spouse lives in Canada.

Certainly the Canada/US tax treaty doesn't, as that is a common reason why Canadians working in the US get taxed by Canada.
So are you a resident in USA and Canada at the same time for tax purposes?
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Pointseeker wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 9:26 pm
So are you a resident in USA and Canada at the same time for tax purposes?
That is exactly what happens. Then you pay tax to both countries. The Canada/US tax treaty grants you a tax credit in Canada for any tax paid to the US, and vice versa.

Net result is you have to do a full return in both countries and your final tax bill is whichever one was highest. Meaning, you get absolutely screwed.

Not what you want, hence the discussion of how to avoid being deemed a resident of Canada if you work in the US.
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Pointseeker wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 9:26 pm
So are you a resident in USA and Canada at the same time for tax purposes?
Sure, and the tax treaty typically has a tie-breaking rule for that scenario. e.g. tax the person in the country where the income was earned, unless they were working for the other country's government...

The other thing that makes things interesting is that the U.S. taxes its citizens on their worldwide income, even if they are non-residents. Most other countries, Canada included, only tax residents, not non-resident citizens.
[OP]
Member
Aug 24, 2014
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Toronto, ON
rj2wells wrote:
Mar 7th, 2015 2:02 am
You are mixing up two different concepts: living somewhere else, and being a non-resident of Canada for tax purposes. These are not the same thing. You can live somewhere else, and be a resident of Canada for tax purposes. The whole idea of being a non-resident of Canada for tax purposes is to avoid paying Canadian tax, and while it is obviously related to the concept of living somewhere else, it's not the same thing at all.

In fact, quite a lot of people try and arrange to remain residents of Canada while living as much as they can somewhere else -- "snowbirds" typically worry about losing their Canadian health insurance, which is what would happen to them if they stayed outside the country long enough to be considered a non-resident. On the other hand, people like me who move away for work WANT to be considered a non-resident, because we don't want to pay Canadian tax -- but CRA may still try and argue that we are residents of Canada for tax purposes, even though we don't live in Canada, if they can claim we have "ties" to Canada.

A common example would be someone who lives in the United States but who is married to a Canadian resident -- outside of exceptional circumstances CRA will claim that the marriage tie to Canada makes that individual a resident of Canada, even if they live outside Canada for years.

Hopefully that helps you understand the answers people have been giving you.

The technically correct answer to your question in post 1 (a question I don't think YOU understood) is that there is nothing stopping a non-resident from becoming a resident again. If you do, CRA will begin taxing you from the day you resumed your Canadian residency. They will not retroactively tax you back through your non-resident period UNLESS they conduct an audit and argue that you were NEVER a non-resident, that in fact you were a resident the whole time. But if they accept that you were a non-resident, then they will not assess taxes for the time you were non-resident.

I hope this helps, and I also hope that in the future you take more time to read what people have been telling you, you got a lot of good answers to your question, which you dismissed due to your OWN misunderstanding of the situation. In the future people may be less willing to answer your questions in a helpful way if they see that as a pattern. Just saying.

But hopefully your question has been answered now?

I probably did not word it well enough but considering I posted this in personal finance I was asking if they could refuse or detain you because of taxes and audit you. I was born in Canada and so were my parents so it would absolutely be a stupid question to ask if they could refuse a person. I meant for not paying tax and being detained for that reason. I typed it on my mobile. Should have clarified it a bit better.
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b1xvuk wrote:
Mar 8th, 2015 11:09 am
I probably did not word it well enough but considering I posted this in personal finance I was asking if they could refuse or detain you because of taxes and audit you. I was born in Canada and so were my parents so it would absolutely be a stupid question to ask if they could refuse a person. I meant for not paying tax and being detained for that reason. I typed it on my mobile. Should have clarified it a bit better.
Lately Canada is standing on its head to prevent some individuals from leaving and it seems to be welcoming all that want to come in. Regardless where you are, if you don't pay taxes, laws are specific to this specific transgression.
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Feb 26, 2015
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Simply...NO. It only becomes an issue when you try to say claim EI, when you haven't in fact paid into the kitty. Something most Canadians get up in arms about when say Refugees (these group is made of different nationalities) are provided for from this bucket of funds.
b1xvuk wrote:
Mar 8th, 2015 11:09 am
I probably did not word it well enough but considering I posted this in personal finance I was asking if they could refuse or detain you because of taxes and audit you. I was born in Canada and so were my parents so it would absolutely be a stupid question to ask if they could refuse a person. I meant for not paying tax and being detained for that reason. I typed it on my mobile. Should have clarified it a bit better.
Deal Addict
Jan 24, 2015
1021 posts
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Canadian in USA
If you REALLY are a non resident you do not owe Canada tax. If you become a resident again you will start paying tax again from that moment forward.

The question would be whether you think you are a non resident but CRA believes you continued to be a resident. In that case they would assess back taxes. You wouldn't be detained but you would get a big bill to pay.

This often happens when a Canadian works overseas while their family stays in Canada. CRA will continue to see that person as a resident even though they live and work abroad.

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