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Pay Cheques

Expert: John R Mott

Celene asked:

Can an employer withhold pay cheques for a group of employees (all the employees work in the same area of the business) without providing an explanation. The employer in question is in Alberta.

John R Mott answered:

An employer may remit payroll deductions throughout the year (i.e. income tax, CPP and EI) for a group of employees without providing any breakdown to the CRA as to how they were determined. It is only when the annual T4 Summary and slips are submitted (by February 28 of the following year) that the cumulative payroll remittances are reconciled to the components.

If a discrepancy arises between the T4 slips and the remittances, the CRA is very assiduous at following up the reasons. Also, the CRA can choose to audit your payroll records at any time during the year, in which case you should be prepared to provide up-to-date records of your computations.

About the author

John Mott is a chartered accountant and tax specialist with a private practice in mid-town Toronto. He provides tax, accounting and advisory services to individuals and small businesses. He may be visited online at:

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