Personal Finance

Transfer gift money from US to Canada

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  • Nov 26th, 2020 2:05 pm
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 8, 2019
26 posts
7 upvotes

Transfer gift money from US to Canada

My brother is sending me gift money (USD) from US to help me with my house downpayment. He plans to wire transfer about 25K USD from his bank into my USD account with a Canadian bank.

Is there anything I need to do to make sure i do this in the most efficient and safe way possible.

Do I have to worry about paying taxes on it?

Should i break it down into chunks?

Just want to make sure i don't mess this up.
13 replies
Deal Fanatic
Dec 5, 2006
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Markham
416thesix wrote: My brother is sending me gift money (USD) from US to help me with my house downpayment. He plans to wire transfer about 25K USD from his bank into my USD account with a Canadian bank.

Is there anything I need to do to make sure i do this in the most efficient and safe way possible.

Do I have to worry about paying taxes on it?

Should i break it down into chunks?

Just want to make sure i don't mess this up.
You don't pay tax on gift money

Why break down into chunks? Less fee?
Deal Guru
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May 8, 2009
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Leask
Better to do it in one shot.

Will your brother wire you USD to deposit in USD to Canada? An alternative to bank wire is sending you a paper check. If you have a USD account at a bank or credit union in Canada, you can deposit it there, then use Knightsbridge to convert it to CAD. Alternatively your brother could have his bank convert the funds to CAD on the wire (and wire CAD to your account).
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[OP]
Newbie
Aug 8, 2019
26 posts
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smartie wrote: You don't pay tax on gift money

Why break down into chunks? Less fee?
I guess it will be more fees the more the transactions. I know that amounts over 10K CAD get reported so I was wondering if that sets of some kind of chain reaction for CRA to come knocking...
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 8, 2019
26 posts
7 upvotes
titaniumtux wrote: Better to do it in one shot.

Will your brother wire you USD to deposit in USD to Canada? An alternative to bank wire is sending you a paper check. If you have a USD account at a bank or credit union in Canada, you can deposit it there, then use Knightsbridge to convert it to CAD. Alternatively your brother could have his bank convert the funds to CAD on the wire (and wire CAD to your account).

Yes he plans to wire US dollars straight into my USD account with a Canadian bank. I usually go the Knightsbridge route which is much cheaper than the bank exchange rate. Didn't think about the paper check route but will probably go with wire transfer in USD. Thanks.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 5, 2006
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416thesix wrote:
I'd rather one transaction with large amount that CRA come to validate whether it's gift, than multiple transactions look like money laundry

I thought 5k+ will be reported?
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May 8, 2009
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smartie wrote: I'd rather one transaction with large amount that CRA come to validate whether it's gift, than multiple transactions look like money laundry

I thought 5k+ will be reported?
$10k+ for FINTRAC... threshold was set in the 70's and hasn't been adjusted since. It's a magical 10k CAD, 10k USD, 10k GBP, etc.

Could do three transactions <$10k to dodge FINTRAC, won't look like money laundering and easily explainable as a cash gift.
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May 16, 2017
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titaniumtux wrote: $10k+ for FINTRAC... threshold was set in the 70's and hasn't been adjusted since. It's a magical 10k CAD, 10k USD, 10k GBP, etc.

Could do three transactions <$10k to dodge FINTRAC, won't look like money laundering and easily explainable as a cash gift.
FINTRAC reporting requirement, electronic transfers: "When you send or receive instructions to transfer $10,000 CAD or more internationally, either in a single transaction or in multiple transactions, within a 24-hour period you must submit a report within 5 business days."
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robsaw wrote: FINTRAC reporting requirement, electronic transfers: "When you send or receive instructions to transfer $10,000 CAD or more internationally, either in a single transaction or in multiple transactions, within a 24-hour period you must submit a report within 5 business days."
Afaik if it's not done in cash, the financial institutions do this electronically. But ya, sum of transactions within 24 hours. By breaking it into say three transactions, it'd be done over a minimum of three (3) days to avoid FINTRAC reporting. Not that it matters, as a FINTRAC report won't affect the fact that it's a cash gift, which is not taxed.
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Deal Addict
Jan 21, 2018
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Don't wire the money to your bank. You'll pay unnecessary wire fees and get a crappy exchange rate. Use a forex company with decent rates. There are many.

$25K is nothing to worry about. All transfers over $10K get reported automatically to FINTRAC, whether foreign or in Canada - and they get tens of thousands of such reports every day on routine transactions by ordinary Canadians that all go into a giant database that nobody ever looks at unless there's some investigation triggered by other reasons. The CRA has no involvement - gifts are not taxable in Canada.
[OP]
Newbie
Aug 8, 2019
26 posts
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I want to use this for a mortgage downpayment. My realtor has told me that if you are receiving gift money from overseas that you will use in downpayment, the best way to do it is via a bank wire so that when I go for my mortgage approval, they bank can see where the money is coming from and can trace it. Not sure if this is really how the banks evaluate things.....anyone heard this before? Either way the money will arrive into a USD account so I will be avoiding the auto conversation. Will then convert with a forex service with a better rate.
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May 16, 2017
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titaniumtux wrote: Afaik if it's not done in cash, the financial institutions do this electronically. But ya, sum of transactions within 24 hours. By breaking it into say three transactions, it'd be done over a minimum of three (3) days to avoid FINTRAC reporting. Not that it matters, as a FINTRAC report won't affect the fact that it's a cash gift, which is not taxed.
As others have said - who cares - unless this is actually trying to hide criminal money-laundering or terrorist funding - a report to FINTRAC is utterly of no concern and has no impact whatsoever on the transaction proceeding or not. (There is a far bigger risk in attempting to illegally skirt the reporting requirements, particularly cross-border, which COULD result on funds being seized.) Using a regular bank wire transfer or a recognized FOREX transfer service with both sending and receiving parties properly identified means that reporting requirements will be electronically fulfilled and there will be ZERO problem.

I used Transferwise to send proceeds from an Estate in Canada to my brother in USA. For the amount in question, it still required a bank wire transfer to fund Transferwise, but more than made-up cost of the wire by the much better Transferwise exchange rate.
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May 8, 2009
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robsaw wrote: As others have said - who cares - unless this is actually trying to hide criminal money-laundering or terrorist funding - a report to FINTRAC is utterly of no concern and has no impact whatsoever on the transaction proceeding or not. (There is a far bigger risk in attempting to illegally skirt the reporting requirements, particularly cross-border, which COULD result on funds being seized.) Using a regular bank wire transfer or a recognized FOREX transfer service with both sending and receiving parties properly identified means that reporting requirements will be electronically fulfilled and there will be ZERO problem.

I used Transferwise to send proceeds from an Estate in Canada to my brother in USA. For the amount in question, it still required a bank wire transfer to fund Transferwise, but more than made-up cost of the wire by the much better Transferwise exchange rate.
Agreed.
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Newbie
Oct 23, 2017
1 posts
Ottawa
Can you please your experience about the transaction. I am thinking of doing same thing for similar reason .

Did your brother faced any issue at the bank ?
How long did it took to get the money in your canadain account .
What documents did you and your brother required to prove that this money is a gift .

Your help much appreciated.
Thank you
R

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