Fraser Forum

This year, Canadians celebrate Tax Freedom Day today—June 10

Printer-friendly version

This year Canadians celebrate Tax Freedom Day on June 10. That means if you paid your annual tax bill up front, you’d give government every dollar you earned before Tax Freedom Day. It’s only from June 10 onward that you’re finally working for yourself and your family.

If it sounds like you’re paying a lot of taxes, it’s because you are. You can easily lose sight of all the taxes you pay, which include everything from income taxes, payroll taxes, health taxes, sales taxes, property taxes, fuel taxes, carbon taxes, profit taxes, to various “sin” taxes and much more.  

Some of these taxes are visible, but many are hidden, making it virtually impossible for the average Canadian to get a clear sense of all the taxes imposed by the different levels of government.

Therein lies the value of Tax Freedom Day. It’s a handy measure of the total tax burden imposed on Canadian families by the federal, provincial and local governments.

In 2018, we estimate the average Canadian family consisting of two or more people will earn $115,724 in income and pay a total of $50,464 in taxes (see table below). In other words, the average Canadian family will pay 43.6 per cent of its income in taxes.

The important question, of course, is whether we’re getting value for all the taxes we pay to finance government spending. While it’s ultimately up to individual Canadians to decide, the first step is knowing how much tax you pay.

On that note, Happy Tax Freedom Day.