Only 1 in 3 Canadians would snitch on tax cheats: survey

Tax cheats | BCBusiness

Canadians pay cash over card to avoid the taxes, and are unlikely to rat out tax cheats, finds new survey from H&R Block

Would you snitch on your neighbours for cheating on their taxes? That might depend on your age: Canadian respondents under the age of 45 are 14 per cent more likely to turn in a tax cheat, according to a survey released Tuesday from H&R block, which had plenty to say about Canadian attitudes toward taxes.
Forty-two per cent of respondents under the age of 45 said that they would report someone for not paying their taxes, while only 28 per cent of respondents over the age of 45 said the same. In total, the survey found that 66 per cent of Canadians said that they were not likely to report a tax cheat.
Overall attitudes toward tax avoidance are similarly glum: nearly six in ten respondents do not believe that it is possible to eliminate tax cheating.
“There are incentives for Canadians to contact the CRA and report tax cheats but it doesn’t seem to be enough to spur people to snitch,” said Caroline Battista, senior tax analyst with H&R Block Canada, in a statement.
Moreover, 53 per cent of Canadian respondents would pay cash to avoid the taxman, citing savings as their main motivation.
When it comes to businesses, respondents have more favourable views of employees than employers who avoid taxes. Nearly four in five respondents said that business owners who use sales suppression software on point-of-sale systems to eliminate records should be charged criminally. However, 46 per cent of respondents said they’re OK with service sector workers who fail to report tips as income.
The findings offer some evidence that Canadian attitudes towards their taxes are shifting: the number of Canadians who believe that paying cash to avoid sales tax is wrong jumped to 58 per cent in 2014, from 28 per cent in 2012.
And a minority of respondents—17 per cent—reported being paid under the table for services.
The online survey conducted by Leger elicited responses from 1,504 Canadians.