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The Canada Revenue Agency has released a tool that helps Canadians determine if they have any unclaimed from the CRA. According to the CRA, from 1998 to May 2019, approximately $1 billion in cheques have gone uncashed. These 7.6 million cheques belong to roughly 5 million Canadians. 

Using this tool, which can be found in the My Account portal on the CRA website, you can collect any CRA cheques you didn’t cash dating back as long as you have been filing taxes. Check it out to see if you have some money coming your way!

Find out the difference between a tax credit and a tax deduction.

Why do Some People Have Unclaimed Cheques?

The CRA issues payments for refunds and benefits usually by direct deposit, but sometimes by cheque or other methods. Cheques can get lost, or they don’t reach the individual because they have changed their address. A cheque’s payee must request that the CRA void the original cheque and reissue a new one because government cheques never expire or stale-date. The payee can’t do that if they didn’t know about the cheque in the first place.  

Are unclaimed cheques real? Beware of scammers posing as the CRA.

How to Find Out if You Have Unclaimed Cheques

Fortunately, the CRA makes it easy for Canadian taxpayers to find out if they have any unclaimed cheques. 

  • First, you’ll need to open a CRA My Account, if you don’t already have one. You can do this on the CRA website.
  • Once you open your account, log in and go to the My Account page. Scroll down to the “Related Services” tab, found on the right-hand side of your browser, and you’ll see an “Uncashed cheques” option. You can see if you have any uncashed cheques there.
Unclaimed Cheques

How do You Claim Unclaimed Cheques?

If you do have any uncashed cheques, you can claim them in the “Uncashed cheques” section. Ask for a duplicate payment by selecting and completing the displayed 535 form. Then send the form using the “submit documents online” feature in My Account or mail the form to the Sudbury Tax Centre.

Sudbury Tax Centre

Post Office Box 20000, Station A

Sudbury ON P3A 5C2

If you are mailing the form to the Sudbury Tax Centre, you must print it and sign it as the payee. You must also ask a witness to sign it, who cannot be a family member, and include your name and address as well as the name and address of your witness. Send one form for each uncashed cheque.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can my unclaimed cheques expire?

Since your unclaimed cheques are government cheques, they never expire.

What if I’ve lost my CRA cheque?

If you’ve lost your CRA cheque, you can ask for a duplicate payment by signing into your CRA My Account and selecting “Uncashed cheques”. You can contact the CRA using the individual tax and benefit enquiries lines. The CRA will verify your account and may send you forms to fill out, they will issue a replacement payment once the verification is complete.

How can I ensure I don’t miss a CRA payment?

The best way to ensure you don’t miss a CRA payment is to sign up for direct deposit. This way, any payments will automatically go to the bank account you specify. You should also ensure you keep your address up to date.

Bottom Line

Using the “Uncashed cheques” tool in your My Account portal on the CRA website, you can see if you’re one of the 5 million Canadians who have unclaimed cheques from the CRA. Maybe you have thousands of dollars waiting for you that you didn’t know about!

Matthew Taylor avatar on Loans Canada
Matthew Taylor

Matthew joined the Loans Canada writing team in 2021 while was finishing up a Bachelor's degree at the University of Saskatchewan. It was there that he discovered his love of writing. His work has appeared in several publications, including the Canadian Student Review and NewEngineer.com. In his spare time, Matthew enjoys reading, geocaching, and spending time with his family and pets.

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