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How to get the government money available to you

(NC) Let’s face it: no one loves doing their taxes. But, in addition to being your civic duty, it’s your doorway into receiving many of the federal rebates, benefit or credit payments you could be eligible for. Here are four ways to make sure you get all the money you’re entitled to from the federal government.

File your taxes on time
All you have to do to receive many government payments, including the Climate Action Incentive Payment or the GST/HST credit, is file your taxes. The Canada Child Benefit also uses information from your tax return to make sure you get your maximum payment. Even if you didn’t make any money last year, your benefit payments won’t be issued until you file your return, so file on time, every time.

Apply for new programs
While some benefits and credits are issued automatically, there are others you need to apply for. This includes the temporary Canada dental benefit for children under 12, and the new Canada Dental Care Plan rolling out this year that reimburses part of dental care costs.

Find forgotten cheques
Who doesn’t love reaching into an old coat pocket and finding a $20 bill you forgot about the last time you wore it? Many of us unknowingly have uncashed government cheques waiting to be deposited, some worth hundreds or even thousands of dollars.

Find out if you have any uncashed cheques by registering for or logging in to your Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) My Account portal. If it shows you have an uncashed cheque but you can’t find it, you can ask for a new one to be issued. Government cheques do not expire so if you do find one that got tucked away somewhere, take it to your financial institution to deposit the money into your account today.

Register for direct deposit
The fastest way to get any refunds or benefits you’re owed from the government is to register for direct deposit. Sometimes things like extreme weather events can delay mail delivery. With direct deposit, you can avoid any postal delays and can get your payment in as little as eight business days. You can sign up through your financial institution or on your My Account. Plus, with direct deposit you’ll never misplace a government cheque.

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