Kamloops Resources – Banking and Personal Finance

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Banking and Personal Finance

 

**First, please check the following websites:

Please watch the following video from Citizenship and Immigration Canada:
http://www.welcomebc.ca/newcomers_guide/newcomers-money-and-banking.aspx

TheMoneyBelt.ca

www.dialalaw.org (Dial-a-Law, a library of practical legal information) has the following scripts in English, Chinese and Punjabi:

#245, Your bank account

#246, Buying goods on credit, credit cards and credit bureaus


Going to the Bankfistful

Canadian banks are safe places to keep your money, and they have information in many languages.  Many of them have special accounts for newcomers to Canada, and some have customer service employees who may speak your language.  You may have an individual account, and if you are married, then you can have a joint (together) account.

Many people use online banking to pay the bills:

  • hydro;
  • car insurance;
  • credit card; and
  • Internet/TV.

They check their bank transactions (the money that goes in and out of the account) and account balances online from a secure Internet connection, never WIFI at a coffee shop or other public place. A fraudster can check everything that you do on your computer, and capture your PIN numbers or login and other identification for your bank accounts.

If you have any signed documents in your email account, delete them to keep your signature safe.  Be sure to use separate logins that are different from your email account.  Never include any personal or confidential information in a regular email.

On a secure site, make sure that you understand and follow all of the instructions for security when you ente

r and exit the site.


Please read Shopping for a Computer in Canadian Newcomer Magazine, http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-18/789-shopping-for-a-computer-n07


 

There are Kamloops banks or credit unions located in the following four areas: Sahali, Downtown, North Shore, and Valleyview

 

Bank of Nova Scotia – Scotiabankscotiabank

*Sahali:
1201 Summit Drive, Kamloops
Tel:  250-314-5475

*Downtown:
Bank of Nova Scotia – Main Branch
276 Victoria Street , Kamloops
Tel:  250-314-3950

*North Shore:
781 Tranquille Road, Kamloops
Tel: 250-554-5625

 

BMO Bank of MontrealBMO

*Downtown:
945 Columbia Street West, Kamloops
Tel:  250-371-6470
http://www.bmo.com

101F-1180 Columbia Street West, Kamloops
Tel:  250-828-8847

*North Shore:
29-750 Fortune Drive, Kamloops
Tel:  250-828-8805

 

Royal Bank of Canada (RBC)royal bank

* Sahali:
175-945 Columbia Street West, Kamloops
Tel: 250-374-9322
http://www.royalbank.com

*Downtown:
186 Victoria Street, Kamloops – Main Branch
Tel:  250-372-1045

*North Shore:
789 Fortune Drive, Kamloops
Tel:  250-376-8822

 

TD Bank

*Sahali:
600-500 Notre Dame Drive
Tel:  250-314-3000

*Downtown:
102-301 Victoria Street, Kamloops – TD Canada Trust
Tel:  250-314-5035

*North Shore:
29-700 Tranquille Road, Kamloops
Tel:  250-376-7774

*Valleyview:
8-2121 Trans Canada Hwy E, Kamloops
Tel:  250-314-5100

Please read Super Mentor, Dauna Jones Simmonds of TD Canada Trust in Canadian Newcomer Magazine: http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-25/924-canadians-who-care-super-mentor-dauna-jones-simmonds-of-td-canada-trust-n09

 

Business Development Bank Of Canada (BDC)BDC

205 Victoria Street, Kamloops
Tel:  250-851-4900

 

C I B CCIBC

*Downtown:
304 Victoria Street, Kamloops
Tel: 250-314-3188
http://www.cibc.com

*North Shore:
6-700 Tranquille Road, Kamloops
Tel:  250-554-5700

*Valleyview:
95-1967 Trans Canada Highway East, Kamloops
Tel:  250-314-3100

 

HSBC Bank CanadaHSBC

380 Victoria Street, Kamloops
Tel:  250-372-7141

 

Interior Savings Credit Unioninterior savings

(a non-profit, member-owned financial institution that provides financial services for members)

202-350 Lansdowne Street, Kamloops
Tel:  250-371-1500

 

Valley First:  A Division of First West Credit Union

valley first(a non-profit, member-owned financial institution that provides financial services for members)

*Downtown:
100-180 Seymour Street, Kamloops
Tel:  250-374-4924

*North Shore:
3-760 Mayfair Street, Kamloops
Tel:  250-571-5700


Helpful Websites

Please read:

 

Canadian Bankers Association:

http://www.cba.ca

  • Home > Consumer Information>Banking Basics > Opening a Bank Account
  • Information about accounts, fees and consumer rights

 

Financial Consumer Agency of Canada:

http://www.fcac-acfc.gc.c

  • Home > Resources > For Consumers > Banking
    • Banking topics, including choosing the right type of account, and cost of banking comparison tables

     

  • Home > Resources > Tools and Calculators > Banking
    • Banking Package Selector Tool and Savings Account Selector Tool; your credit report and credit score, rights and responsibilities

 

Money Mentors

http://www.moneymentors.ca > Learning Centre > free budgeting workbook

  • Workbook Stretch Your Dollars – budgeting basics, with information for choosing a type of bank account

 

Settlement.org:

http://www.settlement.org > Daily Life > Personal Finances>Banks

  • Information about types of banks and bank accounts

 

What Can I Do at a Bank?

  • Open (start) a chequing (CHQ) account (ACC)Bring your passport and two pieces of current and signed identification (I.D.): 
    • Canadian driver’s license;
    • Canadian Citizenship Card;
    • Health Insurance Card;
    • Social Insurance Card (SIN);
    • major credit card (VISA or Mastercard, for example);
    • bank machine debit card; or
    • Senior Citizen’s Card (OAS) to a teller (a person who receives and  pays out money) at the bank

     

  • Write a cheque to pay for something (when you order cheques, include ONLY your name and address) 

 

  • Open a savings account which pays interest (INT) 

 

  • Fill out (write) a withdrawal slip (to take money from a bank account) 

 

  • Fill out (write) a deposit slip (to put money into a bank account) 

 

  • Apply for a credit card 

 

  • Withdraw (W/D) money

Take money out of an account {withdrawal}, either inside the bank or at the bank ATM.  The ATM is a machine which accepts money and pays out money, using a bank debit card.

 

  • Deposit (DEP) money

Pay money into a bank account, either inside the bank or at the bank ATM

    • The ATM is a machine which accepts money and pays out money, using a bank debit card.

     

  • Check your account balances (if you do online banking, then check them daily, and never save your password when you log on to a financial site)

  • Buy a money order, either domestic or international

     

  • Wire money to another country (charges vary among banks and credit unions; the current cost is about $30 for the service)

     

  • Buy a certified cheque

     

  • Buy traveller’s cheques

     

  • Start an RRSP (a registered retirement savings plan)

    • A Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) allows you to delay some of your income taxes.  You claim the amount of your RRSP contribution asdeduction on your income tax return.  The amount that you can contribute is on the Notice of Assessment that you get from the government each year after you file your taxes.  By the end of February each year, your bank, credit union or investment company provides you with a receipt for your RRSP contributions as a deduction on your income tax return.
    • You do not have to claim the entire RRSP contribution each year on your taxes.  You can defer (postpone) some or all of your contributions.  If you do not pay the full amount into your RRSP, then you will have unused contribution room for the future.  You will be able to put more money into your RRSP later.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Start RESPs (Registered Education Savings Plans)

First, watch this short video about RESPs:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=01EWGEr3JvI&feature=youtube_gdata_playerStart an RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) for Your Child

 

 

RESPs (Registered Education Savings Plans) are special, registered savings accounts for your children’s future post-secondary college and/or university education.  The money that you put into the RESP will grow with interest, tax-free.

 

Your children will have this money to pay for university, college, or apprenticeship.  Use an online RESP calculator to find out how much money you can save for your children’s future education.  If you open (start) an RESP for a child who is younger than 17 years old, then the government will add money to it, which is called the Canada Education Savings Grant.  The Basic CESG is worth 20% on the first $2,500 of an annual RESP contribution or $500 a year.  The eligibility accumulates, so if you are not able to put the maximum into your child’s RESP one year, you can carry it forward in future years.  The government does not tax this money while it is in your RESP.  It can grow tax-free.  When the money pays for education in the future, then it is taxed in the student’s name.  Many students have little or no other income, so they can usually withdraw the money tax-free.

In order to open an RESP at a bank or credit union, you will need your child’s Social Insurance Number (SIN) (please see the Social Insurance Number section under Health and Wellness)

 

 

For More Information about RESPs:

 

CanLearn

 

http://www.canlearn.ca/eng/saving/index.shtml

Information on how to pay for postsecondary education; RESPs, student loans, grants and scholarships, the average cost of post-secondary education; search tools, planner and calculators, including parental contribution and loan estimators

 

Smart RESPs:

 

http://www.smartresps.com

 

Heritage Funds website provides information about different types of RESPs and has easy-to-use calculators

 

 

Moneyville:

 

http://www.moneyville.ca

 

>Budgeting>Education Planning > Comparing Education Savings Options

 

A comparison of education savings vehicles, it also has information about:

 

  • How to pay income taxes to the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency)

 

  • How to pay bills (telephone [Shaw or Telus], BC Hydro)

 

 

MoneySense:

 

http://tools.moneysense.ca/calc/univ_cost/

 

University Cost Calculator; RESP Calculator

 

 

Smart RESPs:

 

http://www.smartresps.com

 

Information about different types of RESPs and easy-to-use calculators

 

Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP)

This financial tool allows you to save money for retirement while taking advantage of immediate tax benefits.

One way to combine your RRSP and RESP efforts is to make your RRSP contribution before the deadline each year at the end of February.  Use the tax refund that results to make an RESP contribution, which is tax-deductible.  You may contribute up to 18% of your earned income for the previous year. 

However, if you did not use all of the RRSP contribution limit for previous years, then you can carry the unused amount forward to last year’s amount.  Half of Canadians with RRSPs make a lump sum contribution by the end of February.

Another way to handle your RRSP and RESP contributions is to ask your employer to reduce your monthly withholding taxes, so that you can make monthly payments to both.

 

 

Banking Services

 

In the near future, paper cheques may not exist.  For example, in 2012, 34% of people made a purchase by mobile phone or digital wallet. (Wolfson, p. 9, 2012, How and Why to Engage Clients in Financial Behavioral Change)

 

Bank cards and credit cards have made it very easy to spend money without thinking about the financial future, and digital wallets will make it even easier.  It will be very easy to go into debt without money management skills (Wolfson, p. 10, ibid.)

 

The economy depends on consumers spending money.  Spending money easily is good for the economy, but not for the person (Wolfson, p. 10, ibid.)

 

 

Credit Cards and Debt

 

If you use a credit card, then the credit card company pays the storeand you pay the credit card company for the service of using their money to buy something.

 

Using a credit card means that you will have a credit history and file with a credit bureau (Equifax or Trans Union).  Your credit file is a report of your financial behavior:  how you pay on your credit card and other credit accounts monthly.  For example, do you pay the minimum amount each month or the full total of your balance?  In addition, do you pay on time?

 

If you pay all of the balance on time, then you do not pay extra money (interest) to use the credit card company’s money.

 

It is important to have a good credit rating because it shows that you can usecredit responsibly.  Please read Complaints and Credit Reports:  You Have Rights in Canadian Newcomer Magazine:

 

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-38/1025-money-complaints-and-credit-reports-you-have-rights-n11

 

Each debt with a company (VISA, for example) is assigned a credit rating that is based on a scale from 0 to 9.  The credit rating is determined by:

 

  • how much money you have paid on the debt; and

 

  • if the payment was on time.

 

You will pay interest on the amount of money that you owe if you do not pay the full amount every month and on time.

 

Credit ratings for all of your purchases appear on your credit file with a credit bureau for six years from the date that they were reported.  The two credit bureaus in Canada are Equifax and Trans Union.  They are regulated by the consumer ministries.

 

It is a good idea to get regular credit reports, every four months, to make sure that you have not been the victim of new-account fraud.  New-account fraud is when a thief begins a new account in a victim’s name.

 

Your credit file also includes basic information about you:

  • your name,

 

  • address,

 

  • telephone number,

 

  • birth date,

 

  • social insurance number (SIN) and

 

  • employment history.

 

It is important to have a good credit rating, because many landlords request a credit report.  A credit report is required if you want a loan to buy a car.  If you cannot pay your bills as you agreed, then contact your creditors (the companies to which you owe money), and explain your situation.  Always try to pay off a debt quickly.

 

 

Credit and Credit Card Information

 

Financial Consumer Agency of Canada:

 

http://www.fcac-acfc.gc.ca

 

> Home > Resources > Tools and Calculators > Credit Cards Interactive Tools > Credit Card Selector Tool

 

Credit card selector tool with current information

 

 

Downloadable booklet, Understanding Your Credit Report and Your Credit Score:

 

http://publications.gc.ca/collections/collection_2009/acfc-fcac/FC5-8-25-2008E.pdf

 

There are three major credit reporting agencies in Canada:

 

1)  Equifax Canada

www.equifax.com

1-800-465-7166 (toll free)

 

2)  Trans Union Canada

www.tuc.ca

1-800-525-0262 (toll free)

 

3)  Northern Credit Bureaus Inc.

www.creditbureau.ca

1-800-532

 

 

 

Useful Websites

 

Industry Canada:

 

http://www.ic.gc.ca

 

> Consumer Information > Office of Consumer Affairs (OCA) > More for Consumers > Take Charge of Your Debt

 

Provides information about credit scores and credit reporting agencies (Equifax and TransUnion), with instructions for requesting a free credit report and a sample credit report with explanations

Canadian Consumer Information Gateway

This federal government website includes information about how to protect yourself in various consumer situations, such as shopping on-line, investing, dealing with telemarketers, door-to-door salespeople, or renovation contractors, having your car repaired, and more.

www.ic.gc.ca/cmb/welcomeic.nsf/ICPages/SubjectConsumers#consumergateway

 

 

Budgeting: Dollars and Sense 

 

Learn how to create a basic personalized budget (a saving and spending plan) and establish good saving and spending habits in the process:

 

How can I manage my money better?

 

Do you write down a budget every year?

 

Do you review your budget every month to see how you are doing?

 

Do you make changes when your life changes?

 

Do you focus on how you spend your money, rather than how much money you earn?

 

Do you have short-term goals (1 to 5 years), medium-term goals (5 to 10 years), and long-term goals (10 years plus)?

 

  • A short-term goal is to save $1,000 a year in a savings account.

 

  • A medium-term goal is to save $5,000 for a down payment on a used car.

 

  • A long-term goal is to save $20,000 in an RESP (Registered Education Savings Plan) for a child to start university.

 

 

 

Budget Information

 

Monthly Expenses

 

  • Rent

 

  • Utilities (gas/electricity)

 

  • Phone (please read Choosing a Phone in Canadian Newcomer Magazine,

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-14/337-shopping-choosing-a-phone-n06)

 

In addition, please read about children, social media and cybersafety, at cybersafebook.com.

 

  • Internet

 

  • Bus pass(es)

 

  • Other transportation

 

  • Household insurance

 

  • Food, etc.

 

  • Occasional child care

 

  • Clothing

 

  • Prescription drugs, dental, personal hygiene items

 

  • Education:  tuition

 

  • School supplies/expenses

 

  • Birthdays/gifts

 

  • Recreation/Entertainment

 

  • Contingency/Emergency

 

Total annual expenses:

 

Amount left for savings:

 

If you want to learn more…

 

The website for Credit Counselling Canada is:

 

www.creditcounsellingcanada.ca/Home/tabid/38/Default.aspx

 

 

Money Mentors:

 

www.moneymentors.ca > Learning Centre

Many tools, financial calculators, financial and consumer tips sheets and a free downloadable budget workbook.

 

 

The information on David Chilton’s books (The Wealthy Barber and The Wealthy Barber Returns) is from:

 

http://retirehappyblog.ca/the-wealthy-barber-returns-is-a-great-book/
and

www.thespec.com/news/business/article/610149–the-wealthy-barber-returns-to-thebasics-can-you-say-i-can-t-afford-it

 

 

You’ll find financial tools and tips on this site:

http://abclifeliteracy.ca/financial-literacy

 

 

Please read Telling It Like It Is, by Gail Vaz-Oxlade, an immigrant, in Canadian Newcomer Magazine:

 

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-41/404-telling-it-like-it-is

 

She has a website: www.gailvazoxlade.com/tips.html

 

 

 

Identity Theft

phishing

Photo by www.gettyimages.ca

 

Identity Theft is when someone takes your personal identity information and uses it without your knowledge or consent.  If you are aware and manage your personal identity information, then you can avoid identity theft.

“Phishing” is a form of identity theft.  Fraudsters develop email messages and web pages that look like those of a bank or credit card company.  The emails are a way to “fish” for passwords and financial information, by asking you to “re-register” or “re-activate” an account.

“Vishing” or “Voice Phishing” is a new scam.  Criminals use a new technology called Voice over Internet Protocol, (VoIP).  They use the phone to claim to be a real business in order to convince people to disclose personal information.  For example, an incoming recorded telephone message uses a fake caller ID which matches the one of a real business.  The message says that there is an urgent message and to call a particular telephone number.

You, the victim, are told to punch in personal information, such as credit card numbers or social insurance numbers on the telephone keypad.  The criminals capture the key tones and convert them into the numerical format of your numbers.  Most of the VoIP scams involve telephone calls, but may also involve an e-mail, directing you to a VoIP telephone number.

Never give an personal information, even answering questions about how many children live in the home or your spouse’s name.  If the call is supposed to be from your credit card company, then call the number that is on the back of your credit card to follow up.

For more information on this or other current scams, please contact:

Scam Information Line in Kamloops, 250-828-3266.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Identity thieves steal your name and other personal information:

 

  • address,

 

  • date of birth,

 

  • Social Insurance Number (SIN),

 

  • credit card numbers,

 

  • bank cards,

 

  • PIN numbers,

 

  • driver’s license numbers,

 

  • birth certificates, passports, and/or

 

  • mother’ maiden name.

 

When identity thieves have your personal information, they can:

 

  • empty your bank accounts,

 

  • transfer bank balances and/or

 

  • open new accounts that you do not know about.

 

They can:

 

  • charge items to your credit card,

 

  • apply for new credit cards, and/or

 

  • apply for loans or other services.

 

They can:

 

  • buy vehicles, apartments, luxury items and vacations; and

 

  • commit more crimes using your identity.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

Protect Yourself from Phishing:

 

When shopping online, you must protect your financial identity.

First, make sure that you are using a secure Internet connection, not Wi-Fi.  For example, if you are in a coffee shop, then others who are sitting near you and using the same network can get access to your banking information.

 

On any shopping website, make sure that it has https:// (the “s” means “secure) and a closed padlock or an unbroken key icon in its URL.  This information means that the information that you enter is coded.

 

Do not use any website that does not have both https and

the padlock icon or an unbroken key icon.

 

Second, check the website’s privacy policy, which explains how your information will be used and stored.  Without a privacy policy that protects your information, you have no way of knowing how your information might be used in the future.  Also, make sure that there is contact information, in case you need to complain or return an item.

 

Third, buy a cheap shredder.  Shred all documents with personal information:

 

  • envelopes with your address,

 

  • transaction records,

 

  • copies of credit applications,

 

  • insurance forms,

 

  • cheques,

 

  • financial statements,

 

  • credit card offers with blank cheques, and

 

  • old income tax returns

 

before you put them into the garbage.  You should shred any documents that you do not need on a regular basis.

 

Fourth, if you have a computer, then install:

 

  • firewall,

 

  • anti-virus,

 

  • anti-spyware and

 

  • security (malware)  software updates often.

 

 

Fraud Awareness:

 

Don’t try, buy or reply to emails that ask for any banking information. 

Even if an email that appears to be from your bank and looks real, DO NOT CLICK ON IT, because it may have a virus  or malware attached.    Ifmalware is attached to your computer, then a fraudster can find the passwords to your bank accounts.  Contact the bank or company directly.   Use the bank’s or company’s contact information on their official website or on a bill.

 

Fraudsters are criminals who commit fraud by stealing your name and financial identity (personal data, credit card numbers, passwords, account data) to use your money. They use the telephone, mail, and the Internet to contact countless potential victims, creating identity theft.

 

You can find detailed and up-to-date information and warnings about specific scams on:  www.phonebusters.comPhoneBusters has an Identity Theft Statement that you can use to send to financial institutions, credit issuers, other companies and credit reporting agencies.  The Identity Theft Statement explains that identity theft has occurred, and you did not make the charges or incur the debts.  It includes a space where you can provide the details that companies can use to begin an investigation.

 

Please read Scams: Be Aware of Telemarketers Disguised as Researchers in Canadian Newcomer Magazine:

 

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-19/784-scams-be-aware-of-telemarketers-disguised-as-researchers-n00

 

Telemarketing scams target people using the telephone.  If you receive a phone call from someone whom you do not know, he or she may make you an offer that sounds too good to be true:

 

  • a trip to Disneyland or the Caribbean,

 

  • a car,

 

  • a “guaranteed approval” credit card,

 

  • a “guaranteed” job,

 

  • an investment, or

 

  • a lottery ticket pool.

 

He or she may pressure you to agree to give him or her all of your banking information, or send cash or a money order.  He or she may claim to be a person in authority and ask you many personal questions.

Please read Protect your Finances and Don’t Get Caught in the Phishing Net in Canadian Newcomer Magazine:

 

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-12/430-internet-protect-your-finances-dont-get-caught-in-the-phishing-net-n00

 

 

Phishing Emails:

 

A phishing email is fraudulent, and is usually a two-part scam.  Fraudsters send email that looks real to a large number of people, requesting personal and/or financial account numbers.  Police or financial institutions NEVER call or email to ask for your bank or credit card information or PIN.

 

First, you may not have an account with the company.

 

Second, if the email is addressed to “Dear customer,” then it is fraudulent.

 

Third, there may be two addresses that do not match.

 

Fourth, there may be spelling and/or grammar mistakes.

 

Fifth, the format or layout of the page does not look professional.

 

 

Scams and Fraud

 

For information on common scams, look at the RCMP website below, and click on Scams and Fraud:
www.rcmp-grc.gc.ca

 

Canada Revenue Agency

 

http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/ntcs/nln-rfnd-eng.html

 

> Your Security> Beware of Fraudulent Communications

 

  • Samples of current fraudulent emails

 

 

Canadian Anti-fraud Centre/ Fraudbusters

 

http://www.antifraudcentre.ca

 

1-888-495-8501

 

Information about current Canadian and international scams; top scams and statistics; advice for recognizing, preventing and reporting fraud and identity theft

 

Canadian Bankers’ Association:

 

http://www.cba.ca has examples of fraudulent emails and links to major bank websites.

 

Microsoft:

 

http://microsoft.com/security/online-privacy/phishing-faq.aspx has information about identifying fraudulent emails.

 

Competition Bureau:

 

http://www.competitionbureau.gc.ca

 

> Home > Publications > Tools for Consumers and Businesses> Pamphlets

 

 

Fraud-related topics:

 

  • Is someone giving you a generous gift? Think again!;

 

  • Looking for work? Beware of fake employers!;

 

  • Rebates: The Real Deal;

 

  • Deceptive Prize Notices;

 

  • Promotional Contest.

 

 

What You Should Know About Telemarketing

 

National Do Not Call List

 

Adding your name to the National Do Not Call list gives you the power to reduce the number of telemarketing calls by registering residential, cell, fax or Vo.P telephone numbers:

 

1-866-580-3625

 

1-888-362-5889 TTY (for deaf persons)

 

Protecting yourself from fraud is very important.  Look at the Dial-A-Law website, www.dialalaw.org (a library of practical legal information) for:

 

Script #256, Shopping by Phone, Mail, or the Internet  in:

 

  • English,
  • Chinese or
  • Punjabi

 

Protect your PIN (Personal Identification Number) number with debit and credit cards.  Choose a strong PIN number with a combination of letters (upper and lower-case, AbC), numbers (1, 5, 9) and symbols (!, @, #, %, ^, &).  Make sure that it is not a word that can be found in a dictionary.

 

Never put your PIN number or any passwords to accounts into your cell phone.

 

If you have online banking, do not use your cell phone or a public Wi-Fi connection (for example, at a coffee shop) to use your bank accounts.

 

To protect the information on your phone, use a PIN or password.  On an I-Phone, look for Settings to set your PIN or password.  On Android devices, look for Location & Security.

 

If you have online banking, be sure to have a free anti-malware program such as Avira (free-av.com) on your home computer.  An anti-malware program protects you from attacks by viruses, spyware and other malicious programs.

 

If you have a Facebook or LinkedIn account, then protect yourself by using the privacy controls.

 

Set everything at the highest level.  Be very careful about using the Instant Personalization feature, because it automatically links (connects) your account to many websites.

 

Turn Instant Personalization off, and check the list of apps that you use by going to Account, and then Privacy Settings.  Under Apps and Websites, click “Edit Your Settings.”  Click “Edit Settings” next to “Apps You Use.”  You can define settings for each app that is listed and decide what information that you want to allow that app to access.  You can also decide if you want to remove the app.

 

Do not include:

 

  • Your full birthdate or your child(ren’s) full birthdates

 

  • Your home address

 

  • Your cell phone number

 

  • Bank information

 

  • Medical information

 

  • Any personal information which is sensitive

 

Be aware that job recruiters check Facebook to find out who you are connected with, including your social activities.  Make sure that the information and photos on your Facebook page do not include anything that could not be published on the front page of a newspaper.

 

 

General Information for Consumers

 

Canadian Marketing Association

 

http://www.the-cma.org

 

> For Consumers > Consumer FAQs

 

Shopping advice for online shopping, and other consumer information including the Do Not Contact registry.

 

 

Taxes

 

Many newcomers do not know that they need to file a tax return for the part of the previous year that they lived in Canada.  File your tax returns every year by April 30.  When you file your tax return, you may be eligible for the following benefits:

 

  • Canada Child Tax Benefit (CCTB)

 

  • National Child Benefit Supplement (NCBS)

 

  • Universal Child Care Benefit (UCCB)

 

  • Child Disability Benefit

 

  • Working Income Tax Benefit

 

  • GST/HST Rebate

 

  • Canada Learning Bond (CLB

 

The Canada Revenue Agency online course is:

 

http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/tx/ndvdls/dctrs/lrn-tx/menu-eng.html

 

Home > About the CRA>Understanding Taxes and Benefits

 

  • Basic information about Canada’s taxation system >Home>Individuals>Learning about taxes

 

  • Self-study course teaches how to file a basic tax return

 

Keep records to use when you file your tax return:

 

  • Information slips from your employer (T4)

 

  • Information slips from the bank (T5)

 

  • Public transit monthly passes

 

  • Registered Retirement Savings Plan (RRSP) contribution slips

 

  • Child care receipts

 

  • Moving expenses (if you moved to be at least 40 km closer to work

 

  • Medical expenses (prescription medicine, dentist, glasses, private health insurance)

 

  • Receipts for children’s sports or arts activities

 

  • Receipts for income tax that you paid in another country

 

  • Receipts for donations to Canadian charities

 

Notice of Assessment:

After you file your taxes, you will receive a Notice of Assessment from the Canada Revenue Agency.  It explains any changes that the government has made to your tax return.

 

Get a Refund:

Follow the instructions on the tax return to set up the way that you want to receive your refund:  by direct deposit to your bank account or by cheque in the mail.

 

Remember: 

If you move, then you must inform the Canada Revenue Agency so that you will get your refund.

 

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Settlement.org:

 

http://www.settlement.org

 

> Daily Life > Personal Finances > Taxes

 

Provides basic information about the tax system in Canada, paying income tax and filing a tax return, and applying for benefits and tax credits

 

You can pay income taxes at the bank or online, if you do online banking.

 

Taxes

 

Taxes pay for:

 

  • roads and bridges,

 

  • electricity,

 

  • schools and universities,

 

  • medical care,

 

  • economic development,

 

  • cultural activities,

 

  • national defence and parks,

 

  • community centres,

 

  • police and

 

  • other programs and services which help lower-income families, students, seniors and people who have disabilities.

 

Your employer deducts income tax from your earnings and gives the money to the government.  Each February, your employer sends a form called a T4 slip to you.  It shows your total earnings and tax payments for each month of the previous year.  You need your T4 slip when you file your taxes with the CRA (Canada Revenue Agency, the federal government office that is in charge of all income tax).  The CRA collects taxes for the federal government and the provincial government.

 

Everyone must file a tax return (General Income Tax and Benefit Package) by midnight on April 30 each year, and many people begin to prepare in February by gathering tax information, putting it in a safe place.  During the year, you can put tax statements from your employer and receipts together so that you will have them at income tax time, which can be very busy.  Each time that you are paid, your employer must take the tax money out of your wages and sent it to the government.

 

Your tax return determines if you qualify for tax credits and other benefits.  For example, the Canada Child Tax Benefit (CCTB) is a tax-free monthly payment that helps families with the expenses of raising children under age 18.  At least one parent must be a resident of Canada and both parents must file their income tax forms every year, even if one or both have no income for that year to report. 

You should apply for the CCTB as soon as possible after your child is born or after you become a resident of Canada.  You apply by completing the form, Canada Child Benefit Application (on the Canada Revenue agency website:  www.cra.ca.  You will have to provide proof of birth with your application if:

 

  • you have not been paid CCTB before, and

 

  • your child was born outside of Canada, or

 

  • your child was born in Canada but is more than a year old.

 

The first time that you file your taxes, you will need to get an income tax package, fill it out, and mail it to the CRA, with your:

 

  • Social Insurance Number,

 

  • all required documents,

 

  • Statement of Earnings for the tax year and

 

  • receipts for all tax credits that you claim.

 

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Tax Time Identity Theft Precautions

 

  • Never leave your tax preparations documents in your car.  When transporting tax documents from home to a tax preparer, keep them hidden.

 

  • If you file by mail, the take your return directly to the post office or post office mailbox.  Never mail from your home mailbox or an outgoing mailbox at work.

 

  • If you file online, then keep firewall, anti-virus and anti-spyware software updated.

 

  • If you file online, then use a strong password to protect your data file when e-filing.  Burn the file to a CD or flash drive immediately after you have filed.  Remove the personal information from the hard drive on your PC. 

 

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After the first time that you file your taxes, you can file by mail or online.  Professional volunteers at the Community Volunteer Income Tax Program clinics can help you between February and April.  You can get information about these clinics at Kamloops Immigrant Services or on the CRA website. Sometimes, people need to pay more tax, and sometimes the government refunds money if they paid too much tax.

 

Warning!

Some businesses advertise “instant refunds” when they do you tax return.  They are not refunds.  They are a kind of loan.  There is no guarantee that the refund amount (loan amount) is correct.  You could pay the business to do your tax refund and still owe the government money.

 

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Please read What’s Employment Insurance All About? in Canadian Newcomer Magazine:

http://www.cnmag.ca/issue-39/1036-004-veronica-leonard-money-whats-employment-insurance-all-about-n11

Employment insurance (EI) is a federal government insurance program that all workers and employers pay into.  It is often known by its initials:  EI.

EI helps workers when they lose their jobs or need time off work.  You have to work a certain number of weeks before you can apply for benefits.  There are several types of EI benefits:

 

  • Regular Benefits are for people who lose their jobs through no fault of their own

 

  • Maternity and Paternity Benefits are for those people who are pregnant, have recently given birth, are adopting a child, or are caring for a newborn baby.

 

  • Sickness Benefits are for people who cannot work because of sickness or injury.

 

  • Compassionate Care Benefits are for people who have to provide care or support to a family member who is seriously ill with a risk of death.

 

To apply for EI benefits, fill out an application for EI at a Service  Canada Centre or online.  On the website, look for “Apply for Employment Insurance Benefits” under “Online Services and Forms.”  Call your local Service Canada Centre to find out if you need to make an appointment.  When you go to the appointment, take:

 

  • Your Social Insurance Card and proof of your immigration status;

 

  • A second piece of identification, with your photo, if possible, such as your passport or driver’s license; and

 

  • Your Record of Employment (ROE), if you have it, from every place that you have worked in the last 12 months.

 

If you want to get regular EI benefits, then apply as soon as you lose your job.  Apply even if you do not have your Record of Employment (ROE).  If you delay applying for benefits for more than four weeks after your last day of work, then you may lose benefits.

If you lost your job because you quit or got fired, then it will be difficult to get EI benefits.  Check the website:  www.servicecanada.gc.ca/eng/sc/ei/benefits/regular.shtml.

 

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Financial Literacy

SEDI, Canadian Centre for Financial Literacy

The financial literacy materials on this website are in the following languages:

 

  • Arabic

 

  • Chinese Simplified

 

  • Chinese Traditional

 

  • Hindi

 

  • Gujarati

 

  • Farsi

 

  • Korean

 

  • Punjabi

 

  • Spanish

 

  • Vietnamese

 

  • Tagalog

 

  • Tamil

 

  • Spanish

 

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For References, please go to the Kamloops Education section.

 

Disclaimer
Kamloops Immigrant Services does not endorse and is not responsible for the content of external website sources.  Although we have made every effort to ensure the accuracy, currency and reliability of the content, Kamloops Immigrant Services accepts no responsibility in that regard. Informational materials are for educational purposes only, and are of general value.