A lot of start-up owners want to hire contractors, and for good reason. Contractors tend to be more flexible in their work schedules. They are cheaper as you don’t have to pay for their payroll taxes: Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Employment Insurance (EI). They also might not feel so bad if they have to let a contractor go if cash flow goes south. As appealing as those reasons are, none of them are sufficient to call someone who works for you a “contractor” versus an “employee”.
I feel like I’m part of a cool club when I get to charge my restaurant or pub bill to the company card. Big tip? Sure, why not - it’s a write-off anyway, right? Well, those probably are eligible business expenses, but there are a few quirks when claiming meals and entertainment expenses. Tell us more you say? Ok, strap in because it’s about to get wild! ... or at least educational.
What is the perfect business? For me, it’s an entity that provides its owners with time, money and purpose. It’s a business that has processes in place to allow the owners to work at their highest and best level for portions of the week that are sub-superhuman. It knows its work so well that problems are anticipated and dealt with before they become catastrophes. It provides its workers and its owners with a higher purpose - making the world a better place in large or small ways.
Running a business can be tough, but luckily there are programs that provide financial support to help ease the burden. There are many terms that basically mean the same thing: grants, tax credits, non-repayable or forgivable loans, awards, contributions, subsidies, and rebates. It may be a simplistic view, but I like to think of all of these as free money for businesses. This article will describe a few of our favourite free money options.
GST is a bit of a pain (although less of a pain than our antiquated PST here in BC, but that’s a post for another day - thanks Bill Vander Zalm!). It’s one more thing in a long list of to-dos for any small business owner and we like to make lives a bit easier where we can, so this article will showcase one of CRA’s legal short cuts and help you decide whether it’s for you.
The Scientific Research and Experimental Development program, SRED for short, is a tax incentive program designed to encourage Canadian businesses of all sizes and in all sectors to conduct research and development in Canada.
This article will help you to understand:
If your business is eligible to claim SRED tax credits
What types of expenditures qualify for the program
How to claim SRED credits
How much you can expect to receive from the SRED program,
Costs of claiming SRED credits and other factors to consider.