New Federal and Provincial Laws Implemented

Canada has new and amended laws and policies passed and approved by the Canadian Federal and Provincial government. While it has already been approved, full implementation have commenced on January 1, 2016. The following are some of the new laws and policies to be practiced in the New Year.

Federal Laws
Amended Tax-Free Savings Account (TSFA). The TSFA dollar limit has lessened from $10 000 to $5 500. This will also be subjected to indexation.

Amended Canada Student Loan Program. In order to help students with their student debt, the Canada Student Loan Program will no longer cut support to working students for every dollar they earn over $100/week.

Amended income tax. The middle-class income tax will be cut from 22% to 20.5% for taxable earnings within the income bracket of $45 282 and $90 563. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has promised this income tax cut to Canadian people. However, the income tax for the income bracket of beyond $200 000 will rise from 29% to 33%.

Provincial Laws

Alberta
Driving Penalties. Driving while using a cellular phone in Alberta will be warranted a maximum penalty of 3 demerit points and a $287 fine.

BC
Health Care. Health Care premiums will rise by 4% as decided by the BC province’s latest budget allotment.

Manitoba
PTSD Legislation. Manitoba province launches the Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) Legislation. This is the first legislation of its kind in Canada. Employees diagnosed with the disorder will be given access to coverage under the Workers Compensation Board. The legislation covers all workers of the province and allows the same coverage for everyone including medical staff and retail employees, firefighters, soldiers and emergency responders.

New Brunswick
Flavored Tobacco. As of January 1, 2016, sale of flavored tobacco, including menthol will be banned. The province has also approved the ban of e-cigarettes and e-juices to people under the age of 19.

Ontario
Nuclear Plant Charge. Residential hydro bills will be $5.60/month lesser. The amount removed is from the nuclear plant charge fee on hydro bills. Businesses and offices will still be required to pay the fee.

Winter tires. The province requires insurance companies to offer discounts and/or privileges to drivers who have installed winter tires on their cars.

Crossovers. A fine of minimum of $150 to $500 will be penalized to drivers who refuse to wait until pedestrian has safely reached the other side of designated crossovers of school crossings.

Quebec
Taxi Drivers’ Dress Code. As of January 1, 2016, Montreal taxi drivers will have to follow a dress code as per requirement of the law by the city council. The dress code approved are dark pants or shorts and white shirt. The dress code is only applicable when they are on the job.

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