CRA blocks more than half of calls to meet service targets, regularly provides wrong information to taxpayers: Auditor General

 Jesse Snyderby Jesse Snyder

Canada’s tax agency blocks more than half of calls to meet performance standards and gives bad advice frequently, Auditor General reveals

OTTAWA — The Canada Revenue Agency blocked more than half of the calls it received from Canadian taxpayers in order to obscure the performance results of its customer services division, and also accidentally provided incorrect information to a high number of callers, a new report has found.

According to a report released by the Auditor General of Canada Tuesday, CRA call centres blocked 54 per cent of the 53.5 million calls it received from taxpayers between March 2016 and March 2017.

“The Agency blocked calls so that it could meet its service standard for agent wait times,” the report said.

CRA call centres are responsible for taking questions from Canadian taxpayers and businesses about their taxes, credits and benefits.

The study comes after a Financial Post report in October found widespread delays in taxpayer-requested income tax reassessments and other forms, largely due to Ottawa’s ongoing consolidation of the agency into fewer offices. Political opponents of the Trudeau Liberals have in recent months latched onto some of the issues surrounding the CRA, including claims that some people have had more difficulty accessing the disability tax credit (DTC).

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