UFile and SmartSAVER Partner to Broaden Access to Post-Secondary Funding
Tax preparation software will identify families for the nonprofit organization to reach Canadian students who are eligible to receive education funding from a federal government program
- 3.4 million Canadian children are eligible for the Canada Learning Bond but 2.4 million have not registered for it according to the most recent federal government data.
- The Canada Learning Bond is a government education grant, which contributes up to $2,000 in a child's RESP to fund post-secondary education with no personal contributions required.
- UFile's updated Tax Saving Ideas section prompts tax filers to open a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) to access the Canada Learning Bond, if eligible, and the Canada Education Savings Grant through the use of SmartSAVER's online platform.
- 77% of Canadians do not think enough is done to educate children about taxes, banking, and spending. Nearly three quarters are 'proud' to pay taxes to support public services and the majority said education is the most important public service to fund with tax dollars.
TORONTO, March 19, 2019 /CNW/ - UFile and SmartSAVER have partnered to broaden access to government education funding for eligible Canadian families who need support to save for post-secondary school. The tax preparation software's Tax Saving Ideas section prompts eligible tax filers to open a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) to access the Canada Learning Bond, if eligible, as well as the Canada Education Savings Grant through the use of SmartSAVER's online platform.
According to Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC), 3.4 million Canadian children are eligible for the Canada Learning Bond but 2.4 million have yet to receive their grant, as of December 2018. The Canada Learning Bond (CLB) is money provided by the Government of Canada and deposited into a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP) for children from low-income families. No personal contribution is required in order to access the funds, which help to pay the costs of a child's full- or part-time studies after high school at apprenticeship programs, CEGEPs, trade schools, colleges, and universities.
"SmartSAVER's mission to make government education funding more accessible deserves more attention than it receives," says Sylvain Fortin, marketing manager, UFile. "Income tax season is when most Canadians are reflecting on their personal financial situations and our software now prompts eligible tax filers to sign up for the Canada Learning Bond through SmartSAVER who may have otherwise not been aware."
"Less than 40% of eligible children have accessed their Canada Learning Bond, with many families unaware of their eligibility because it can be difficult to confirm whether or not they fall under the income level to receive the grant," says Luke Connell, executive director, SmartSAVER. "UFile can mediate this uncertainty and provide parents with a straightforward path to take the first steps to getting access to the Canada Learning Bond and begin to think about their child's post-secondary education future. In an age where income disparity and equitable access to opportunity is a growing issue, UFile and SmartSAVER are in agreement that a powerful remedy for this is education."
New research carried out for UFile by Forum Research says that 77% of Canadians do not think enough is done to educate children about personal finance matters like taxes, banking, and spending. Of the 1,019 surveyed, 73% say they are proud to pay taxes to support public services and the majority identified education as the most important public service to fund with tax dollars. However, 45% of Canadians are not confident about their financial future, a statistic that increases as education levels decrease.
SmartSAVER is a non-profit community project that helps Canadian families start saving for their children's education with information on free government money and online access to get savings started. Our goal is to make it easier for families to understand and access the government money that is available for education after high school using a Registered Education Savings Plan (RESP).
UFile is the Canadian consumer tax program from Thomson Reuters, located in Montreal, Quebec. It is a leading provider of tax preparation products and has served the professional tax community with tax products for more than 25 years. UFile products include UFile ONLINE, UFile for Windows, UFile PRO, and UFileT2 for corporations. To register for this year's tax return, please visit www.ufile.ca and connect on Facebook and Twitter @UFile.
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