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Why more choice means a better way to pay taxes and bills

Three benefits to Canadian consumers and businesses of having more payment methods available for paying their taxes and bills

As the deadline for filing personal tax returns for 2018 in Canada is April 30, 2019, many Canadian individuals and businesses are focused on the payments that they may need to make to the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) at the end of this month.

Of course, this means calculating the value of any payment due, but it also means considering which payment method to use when making the transaction. Previously this has not been something that required much consideration; the number of payment methods on offer were few, and so needed little deliberation, regardless of whether the tax payer had a preferred method for making the payment.

However, a new payment partnership between Paysafe and PaySimply is enabling Canadians to make alternative payments to the CRA through PaySimply’s online portal, giving individuals and businesses more choices when it comes to paying their taxes.

Here are the benefits tax-paying consumers and businesses will be able to take advantage of through the portal.

“In a world where the utility of the chequebook is in sharp decline, any system that continues to rely on this payment method feels clunky and time consuming.”

“On average an online business in Canada accepts four payment methods, but the result of increased consumer expectations is that the average business will accept six payment methods in two years’ time.”

“Research indicates that as much as a third of Canadians are either underbanked (28%) or completely unbanked (6%); a significant issue when it comes to making or collecting online tax payments.”

 3. More payment methods mean greater financial inclusion

One further factor that is driving demand for alternative payments is that they are often the path for the unbanked and underbanked to access the same level of financial services that the rest of the population do through banking relationships.

Research indicates that as much as a third of Canadians are either underbanked (28%) or completely unbanked (6%); from both the consumer and CRA perspective this presents a significant issue when it comes to making or collecting online tax payments. All the time that the only available payment method is associated to owning a bank account (transfer, card, cheque) this avenue to settling any tax or bill is closed to a substantial percentage of the population.

Through the PaySimply portal, anyone can make payments to the CRA through methods that aren’t dependent on a traditional bank account, including by cash through an online PIN, or a digital wallet such as Skrill or NETELLER. This democratization of the tax payment process is beneficial for the CRA, as well as providing financial service parity for all tax payers.

Due to the rise of the gig economy, it has also become clear that less people are now subject to “deductions at source” taxation, meaning that they need to submit tax payments in due course instead.

Looking beyond tax

Whilst the primary focus of Canadians this month might be their personal tax returns, the scope of PaySimply extends well beyond that. Small businesses, which are required to submit tax payments regularly throughout the year, will be able to do so using the payment method that is preferable to them, and individuals will be able to do the same for other regular payments, such as utilities, education or municipal property taxes.

Bringing more choice to these bill payments will bring the same benefits as they do to tax payments, meaning this is a significant upgrade for consumers in these areas also. And one further added benefit of digitizing payments and offering more payment methods is that it reduces the likelihood of any service interruption. As online payments are more convenient, and the payment is settled much faster than a mailed cheque, consumers can ensure that they pay their service providers in a timely manner.