The Office of the Taxpayers' Ombudsman handles
individual complaints from taxpayers where he/she was not able to
resolve a service complaint through the CRA's internal process or if the complaint
process hasn't been tried and there are compelling
circumstances for the Ombudsman to review it. Such compelling
circumstances could include, for example, situations in
which an auditor repeatedly contacts a taxpayer when the
taxpayer has asked them to deal with their authorized
representative, or unexplained delays by the CRA in processing a
The Ombudsman's mandate with respect to individual
complaints is strictly on the service side, and no technical tax
issues will be considered in the investigation.
The Ombudsman also handles systemic investigations in respect of
which she reports directly to the Minister of National
Revenue. Such investigations have addressed processing delays,
or system-wide mistakes (i.e., a large number of
individual taxpayers being erroneously classified as deceased in
the CRA's database). These systemic investigations could arise
out of recurring complaints, requests from tax professionals, or
The Office of the Taxpayers'
Ombudsman operates independent of the CRA and attempts to
be impartial and fair in the review of service-related complaints.
The Ombudsman is ultimately accountable to the Minister, not
the CRA. All information communicated to the Ombudsman
through the complaint process is kept confidential, except to the
extent a taxpayer gives consent to its release to assist the
Ms. Sherra also provided a list of tips for tax
professionals for assisting their clients with service-related
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