Take action – Tax changes will impact your future …
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To all Canadians,
On July 18, 2017, Minister of Finance Bill Morneau on behalf of the Department of Finance and the Government of Canada released Tax Planning Using Private Corporations. This document calls for drastic changes to the taxation of small business owners and specifically targets professionals in Canada. Specifically, the Liberals are proposing changes to: income sprinkling using private corporations; holding an investment portfolio inside a private corporation; the lifetime capital gains exemption; and converting private corporation income into capital gains. The impacts of these changes are yet to be fully understood or measured, but they will be significant to all professionals now and in the future.
We are not treated like other public servants: we do not get a benefits package, paid maternity leave, pension plans, vacation pay, or sick leave. The right to incorporate and the associated tax benefits were negotiated by our provincial associations years ago in lieu of benefits and raises. This was done to cut government healthcare spending, and now that those negotiations are forgotten, the government is trying to take these benefits away. We rely on our corporations to run the business-end of our practices (purchasing medical-grade equipment, staff, overhead, rent, computer technology, protecting patient records and so on). The trade-off allowed us to do the job of caring for our patients, while still caring for our families, our children and our retirement.
Let us be clear: we respect the law. The investment strategies we employ by way of our corporations are not “tax loopholes”. In the absence of reasonable alternatives we use our corporations as a long-term saving strategy to fund our pension. In other countries doctors are provided with basic benefits in addition to their wages which we are not. We need to be able to realize these tax savings to balance the scales. Without the tax benefits of incorporation, it will be difficult for us to continue with the care we wish to provide our patients.
In recent years, the provinces have had billions in unilateral cuts to frontline patient care. In Ontario alone, over $3 Billion has been unilaterally cut since 2015 by the provincial government from the patient services which doctors provide. With these federal tax changes, some physicians will close their offices and retire early or leave Canada altogether. Ultimately leading to longer and longer wait times and lower quality of patient care.
Patient accessibility of medical care in Canada already ranks third last amongst the commonwealth countries. In our opinion, the proposed tax changes will be a further detriment to Canada's already ailing health care system.
We, concerned Canadians, urge you to reconsider your proposed changes to private corporations, and to maintain benefits for small business owners. Prime Minister Trudeau, please preserve fair small business tax laws and not further erode access to our health care system. Patients can never come first when frontline physicians are put last.
For anyone reading this, we encourage you to get involved in this process by contacting the Department of Finance as they are looking for comments on the proposals firstname.lastname@example.org. We also encourage you to reach out to your local MP to voice your concerns as they represent your voice in parliament, https://www.ourcommons.ca/Parliamentarians/en/members
This petition will be delivered to:
Prime Minister of Canada
Minister of Finance
Minister of Health
Leader of the Official Opposition of Canada and Leader of the Conservative Party of Canada
Leader, New Democratic Party of Canada
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