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Canadian RN's and Taxes

Updated: Mar 12


Taxes – it’s a love/hate relationship if we’re honest. We all appreciate well maintained roads, for us Canucks being able to visit the doctor, clean drinking water, and a lack of sewage in our yards. However, if you’ve ever questioned whether you’re really bringing home as much as you should be this article is all about taxes, the average wage of an RN in Canada, and what that means for your pocket book.


Let’s start with what this article is not about for clarity:


1. This is not an article about tax advise, or total deductions. Each union has differentiating fees. This article simply looks at from a provincial standpoint (because the federal tax rate is even from province to province) what dollar amount you see disappear each pay period to assist your provincial government in paying for the services they offer within the province.


2. This article does not take into consideration overtime hours, hour differentials etc. Yes nearly all RN’s do benefit from this, but to try and make an apple to apple comparison becomes difficult.


3. This article does not attempt to argue if one province has a lower tax rate than another that it is somehow better than the other province. This is meant as an information article only for Canadian RN’s. Personally, I live in a province with a higher tax rate than many – yet I love what the province offers in commute times, and the proximity to the outdoors.


With all the preamble, and disclaimers out of the way we begin.


In November 2021 the Canadian Federal of Nurses Unions (CFNU) published a comparative of collective bargaining agreements at that time across Canada. It showed hourly wages ranged from 26 dollars an hour on the low end in Quebec to just over 48 dollars an hour for a general duty Canadian RN on the high end working in Alberta. This information did not include the territories. Rather than requote the report, I’ve posted a link to the full report here: 2021 CFNU Report


It’s an excellent report that looks at weekend rates, evenings, on calls, call backs and all the other differentiators Canadian RN’s deal with on a regular basis.


For the sake of this article, on average a Canadian RN brings home between a minimum of $65,463 and a maximum of $86,831. Using the average of these two numbers we’ll use a working number of $76,147 (rounded) for this article as the working number on which we’ll then talk about taxes.


The Canadian Tax System:


In Canada we have a system known as a progressive or graduated system. Unlike a flat tax system which says you owe a specific percentage annual of your tax our system progressives or steps up through a number of percentages. Simply put, the more money you make the more taxes (in theory) you pay. It should be noted that when you step into the next bracket of taxes the dollars below this amount are taxed at the lower amount. Therefore as a Canadian RN your rate on those dollars remain the same, where as your next bracket of income is then taxed at a different rate. More on this late.


So what does this look like?


Federally, the tax brackets play out the same regardless of what province you live in. If the average Canadian RN makes $76,146, they would pay out: $12, 849.10 annually in federal taxes. You can see on the table below the progressive or graduate system that the Canadian tax system takes on. The first $50,197 dollars of your salary is taxed at 15%. However the next $50,195 you make take a 5.5% increase. For those of you interested once you exceed $100,392 annually in income the next $55,233 see another 6% removed federally for taxes. If you’re interested in the full list the link to the federal rates can be found here for 2022: 2022 Personal Federal Tax Rates


2022 Federal Tax Rates Based on Average Annual Salary of $76,146.00

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $50,197

15%

$7,529.55

Next 50,195

20.5%

$5,319.55

Next $55,233

26%

$0

Total Due

$12,849.10


If this is where taxes ended I’m sure we would all rejoice, but as mentioned at the top of this section there is still the provincial section to consider.


Provincial taxes: Where take home beings to separate.


Unfortunately for Canadians, federal and provincial governments each want a piece of our income. This is where things get a little funky, New Brunswick for example looks at the first $43,985 dollars worth of income. Nova Scotia, the first $29,590. Alberta the first $131,220 and Manitoba the $33,723 worth of income. My point? Each province and territory governs differently and while this article is accurate for 2022, each government (federally and provincially) may choose to adjust their rate up or down annually at their discretion. For a full list of 2022 Canadian provincial tax rates here is the link: 2022 Provincial Tax Brackets


In an attempt to give you a fair comparison I’ve listed below each provincial 2022 graduated tax rate. I’ve used the average Canadian RN salary of $76,146.00 and then calculated based on the tax brackets the total dollar amount due provincially.


If you’re looking for a final comparison, scroll through these to the table at the end that adds the federal and provincial rates together for a side by side comparison.


Newfoundland and Labrador (NFLD)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $38,081

8.70%

$3,313.05

Next $38,080

14.50%

$5,519.43

Next $59,812

15.80%

$0

Total Due

$8,832.47


Prince Edward Island (PEI)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $31,984

9.80%

$3,134.43

Next $31,985

13.80%

$4,413.93

All Amounts Above $63,969

16.70%

$2,033.56

Total Due

$9,581.92


Nova Scotia (NS)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount due

First $29,590

8.79%

$2,600.96

Next $29,590

14.95%

$4,423.71

Next $33,820

16.67%

$2,828.23

Total

$9,852.90

New Brunswick (NB)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $43,835

9.68%

$4,243.23

Next $43,836

14.82%

$4,788.49

Next $54,863

16.67%

Total

$9,031.72


Quebec (Que)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $45,105

15%

$6,765.75

Next $45,095

20%

$6,208.20

Next $19,555

17.84

$0

Total

$12,973.95


Ontario (Ont)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $45,142

5.05%

$2,279.67

Next $59,713

9.15%

$2,836.87

Total

$5,116.54


Manitoba (Man)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $33,723

10.80%

$3,642.08

Next $39,162

12.75%

$4,993.16

Amounts over $72,885

17.40%

$567.41

Total

$9,202.65


Saskatchewan (Sas)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $45,667

10.50%

$4,795.04

Next $84,829

12.50%

$3,809.88

Amounts over $130,506

14.50%

Total

$8,604.91

Alberta (AB)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $131,220

10%

$7,614.60

Total

$7,614.60


British Columbia (BC)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $42,184

5.06%

$2,134.51

Next $42,185

7.70%

$2,615.07

Next $12,497

10.50%

Total

$4,749.58


Yukon (YK)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $49,020

6.40%

$3,137.28

Next $49,020

9%

$2,441.34

Next $53,938

10.9%

Total

$5,578.62


Northwest Territories (NWT)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $44,396

5.90%

$2,619.36

Next $44,400

8.60%

$2,730.50

Next $55,566

12.20%

Total

$5,349.86


Nunavut (Nun)

Tax Bracket

Tax Percentage

Amount Due

First $46,740

4%

$1,869.60

Next $46,740

7%

$2,058.42

Next $58,498

9%

Total

$3,928.02


Province

Average Salary

Federal Tax Deductions

Provincial Tax Deductions

Take home

NFLD

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$8,832.47

54,464.43

PEI

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$9,581.92

$53,714.98

NS

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$9,852.90

$53,444.00

NB

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$9,031.72

$54,265.18

Que

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$12,973.95

$50,322.95

Ont

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$5,116.54

$58,180.36

MB

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$9,202.65

$54,094.25

Sas

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$8,604.91

$54,691.99

AB

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$7,614.60

$55,682.30

BC

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$4,749.58

$59,177.32

Yk

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$5,578.62

$57,718.28

NWT

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$5,349.86

$57,947.04

Nun

$76,146.00

$12,849.10

$3,928.02

$59,368.88



What these numbers do and don’t do.

As noted earlier these numbers should not be taken into isolation. For example, in Toronto and Vancouver the average detached house costs over a million dollars. Meanwhile in the Maritimes (NB, NS, and PEI) while prices are starting to move up for detached homes, they are still relatively less expensive in comparison to major city centres. This list does not consider individual city property taxes if you own a location, or average rent for those who prefer to pay a monthly fee and avoid the concerns of building upkeep and outdoor upkeep.


The list also does not consider other benefits or deductions you will see throughout the year. For example, hourly differential or top up vary per province and union. Northern Allowance may or may not apply depending on where you live. Meanwhile CPP, and EI deductions have not been factored into the take home of this scenario.


What these numbers attempt to do is give a Canadian RN looking to move somewhere across Canada a starting point on evaluation. Once you begin to understand the Canadian tax system then you can move from that to looking at the individual provinces in further depth that you are considering and the true cost of living in that location.


Final thoughts:


Each of us chose to live a different life-style, and expect/want different amenities or attractions in our lives. Therefore, for some looking at this list you may automatically look to establish yourself in Nunavut as you’ll also receive Northern Allowance, and potentially housing. On top of a good take home pay, you love the outdoors, and don't mind the cold. For others, you want to have the hustle of a larger city and want the ability in the winter to quickly reach a warm location when the temperature hits the double digit negatives for a vacation. Therefore provinces like Ontario, Alberta, BC and Quebec will be the four provinces your focus will narrow in on.


All that said, wherever your journey leads we at XC Nurse look forward to being a tool in your moves across our nation of Canada.



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