Student Loans

September 28th, 2009

Student loans….. not a topic that most people really enjoy talking about.  But if you have to have one, you might as well do it right.

You probably already knew that you can deduct the interest on your student loan.  So once you graduate and start paying back that huge loan, at least the government will give you some tax relief.

But, keep in mind that in order to deduct the interest on a student loan, it MUST be a government student loan.  Some banks advertise a student line of credit.  Other banks may pitch you a loan designed for students.  I’m not saying these aren’t good products, I’m just warning you that you may not be able to deduct the interest on these loans.

If in doubt, just ask the bank if the loan is being made under either the Canada Student Loans Act, the Canada Student Financial Assistance Act, or a similar provincial or territorial government law.

Filed under: Personal Tax by David Boese No Comments »

Big news for fishermen

September 22nd, 2009

It’s no surprise to anybody in the Maritimes that this year’s lobster season was a mess.  Super low prices paid to the fishermen, combined with so-so catches, resulted in some substantial financial pain for fishermen.  So it was welcome news in June when the Federal department of Fisheries and Oceans announced that they were going to help the fishermen.

And now, finally, we have some real numbers.  The maximum assistance to each fisherman will be $5,000.  To qualify for any assistance, you must have:

  • Held a valid lobster license in both 2008 and 2009.
  • Earned income from lobster fishing in both years.
  • Had gross earnings from lobster landings of an amount equal to or less than $50,000 in 2009.
  • Experienced a drop of at least 25% in lobster sales between 2008 and 2009.
  • Be lobster dependent (lobster catch must be at least 50% of the total value of your landed value in 2008, AND your gross value of lobster landings must have been at least $2,500 in 2009.)

If you meet all these requirements, fill out the form found at the following web address.

The official name for this assistance program is the Short-Term Transitional Measures assistance.

Filed under: Business tax, Other tips by David Boese 1 Comment »

Based on the Speech from the Throne yesterday, there are a few interesting things to watch for in the upcoming provincial budget on September 24.

The speech states that: “We will establish a graduate tax incentive, providing up to $15,000 to keep university and community college graduates here at home.  Education must be accessible. Our future prosperity depends on it.”  Currently the province gives graduates who stay in Nova Scotia a $2,000 tax rebate.   $15,000 sounds even better. Watch for details in the Thursday budget.

Also, this morning Premier Dexter announced a new 10 per cent credit to businesses in the manufacturing and processing sector that are investing in machinery and equipment.  No real details yet, but the program only begins in January so stay tuned.

Filed under: Business tax, Consumer Tax by David Boese No Comments »

Residents of Nova Scotia will get their first provincial budget from the NDP government on Thursday, September 24.  This should be interesting.  You can visit for budget details at 2:00 pm on Thursday.

Filed under: Other tips by David Boese No Comments »