It is March 2013, and I return to Canada to perform for a fundraising show in Kindersley, Saskatchewan, about 2 hours outside Saskatoon. Kindersley has a population of just under 5,000 and is a mineral rich farming community, like so many others in this region.
Over the last 25 years of my career, I have performed for a lot of fairs and expositions, including the Calgary Stampede, Saskatoon Prairielands Exhibition, Medicine Hat Exhibition, Royal Manitoba Winter Exhibition in Brandon, private parties for the military, and others.
In December 2011, I did not apply for a tax exemption before doing a show for a military squadron. This was my mistake and I knew better. Regaredless, it cost me $225.00, which the government withheld from my check and submitted to Revenue Canada (the equivalent of the Internal Revenue Service in the USA). The only way I was going to get that money back was to file a Canadian tax return. I didn’t bother.
Before working in Canada, U.S. citizens must apply for tax exemption. If they do not, it is mandated that the Canadian host retain 15% of gross payment and send it to Revenue Canada. To apply for tax exemption, there are a number of steps to take. It is not complicated, but it must be done at least 3-4 weeks before the event date to give Revenue Canada sufficent time to respond.
I filled out the Regulation 105 Waiver Application to the best of my ability and I faxed the form to Revenue Canada. My fax was seven pages.
It’s important to know that US Citizens are only exempt from witholding on $15,000 Canadian “net” revenue. On the Regulation 105 Waiver Application you can show that you have expenses. These can be deducted from the $15,000 net. Expenses can include, but are not limited to: payroll to other members of your group, hotel, transportation costs, car rental costs, fuel in Canada for your vehicles, meals and rental equipment you will need to acquire to do the event.