How to Repay Back Taxes

Mastering Your Finances: A Comprehensive Guide on How to Repay Back Taxes and Stabilize Your Financial Standing

Dealing with financial troubles is never a pleasant task. It becomes even more daunting when you find yourself owing back taxes. But there’s no need to panic! This guide will provide helpful insights on how to repay back taxes and get your finances back on track.

Understanding the Challenge: More Than Just a Tax Bill

Firstly, it’s vital to understand that your issue is not just about the tax bill. It’s also about the underlying financial mismanagement that led to this situation in the first place. By recognizing this, you can start to address the root of the problem.

Two-Step Approach to Financial Recovery

Feeling overwhelmed is natural when dealing with financial issues. However, you can regain control by focusing on two key steps:

1. Establishing an Affordable Tax Payment Plan

The first step to resolve your current crisis is to deal with your income tax bill. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) mandates payment or a payment plan upon assessment. Ignoring this bill can lead to severe consequences like additional interest charges, late penalties, seizure of funds, and even a lien against your property.

Even if you can’t pay the entire bill immediately, setting up an affordable payment plan with the CRA is crucial. This action will help you manage this debt and prevent further financial complications.

2. Developing a Realistic Debt Repayment Strategy

The second step involves creating a practical plan to handle your overall debt. Using your RRSP as a means to reduce debt is not a sustainable solution. It not only comes with immediate tax consequences but also hinders your financial stability during retirement.

To handle your debt effectively, you need to assess your full financial situation. Your budget plays a pivotal role in this, as does prioritizing your debts based on the amount owed and the debtor. Evaluate all your debt repayment options, including trimming down expenses, boosting income, limiting discretionary spending, and considering alternatives to making contractual payments.

Crafting a Plan Tailored to Your Circumstances

It’s possible that your budget may not allow you to pay off all your debts right away. However, a thorough examination of your financial situation will help you devise a plan that suits your current circumstances while also aiding future financial growth.

By maintaining a balanced budget, crafting a strategy to eliminate your debts, and planning to boost your savings, you can shift from crisis management to making decisions that yield long-term financial benefits.


Figuring out how to repay back taxes and stabilize your finances can be a daunting task, but with a well-planned strategy, it’s absolutely feasible. Remember, the key is not just to pay off your current debts but to establish a financial management system that prevents future debt accumulation.

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