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Montreal Expats: Tax and Social Security

In a number of different sectors, companies based in Montréal are among the world leaders in their respective fields. All the more reason for expats to be interested in working there! Our expat guide to working in Montréal gives you a first overview.
As much part of life in Montréal as dealing with snow: taxes.

Taxation and social security are, of course, two administrative topics that any expat has to deal with. If you have read the other parts of our article series on Montréal, you will of course be aware that a great number of legislative and administrative rules that apply for Canada as a whole do not necessarily apply to life in Québec. This is also the case for the two topics we cover below.

To-Do: Social Security

Apart from the healthcare provisions we have taken a look at in our article on living in Montréal, and tax-funded measures such as sickness and maternity leave, social security provisions in Québec are covered under the Québec Pension Plan, administered by the Régie des rentes du Québec. The provisions cover you for old age and disability. The contribution rate of currently 10.8% is split evenly between you and your employer, you pay half (5.4%) and deduct the other half at source from the employee’s pay. If you hail from one of the 32 countries with which Québec has signed an International Social Security Agreement, you can get your contributions made during your time abroad in Montréal credited upon your return home. For a full list and further information, please visit the RRQ website.

How Much Tax Will You Be Paying?

Québec handles its income tax on the basis of four tax levels:

  •      16% for 42,705 CAD or less
  •      20% for more than 42,705 CAD, but not more than 85,405 CAD
  •      24% for more than 85,405 CAD, but not more than 103,915 CAD
  •      25.75% for more than 103,915 CAD

The deadline for filing your tax return is 30 April of each year, with the fiscal year being equivalent to the calendar year. Please keep in mind that although as a general rule, all taxes due are automatically withheld from your monthly paycheck, it is still your obligation to file your tax return, and to do so on time. As most other government-related admin issues, your Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a vital prerequisite for filing your tax return. We have touched the issue of acquiring a SIN in our article on working in Toronto.

Although Canada has signed a number of double taxation treaties with many different nations around the globe, Québec only has one such treaty, namely with France. Nonetheless, the tax legislation in Québec still makes it possible to avoid double taxation with treaty countries in many cases. For further information and a list of countries Canada has an existing or impending agreement with, see the pages of the Department of Finances Canada.


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