My poor son.

In an effort to teach financial literacy to my nine-year-old, I had him go through the process of setting up his own account.

Yes, we had set an account up for each of our children when they were born; however, going through the experience of setting up your account and ‘feeling’ the responsibility of that account is what we wanted to achieve with this exercise. So, we scheduled a ‘meeting’.

On the day of the ‘meeting’ my son took his identification—SIN and Health Care Card—walked into the branch, asked to speak to the person for whom we had made the appointment, listened carefully, if not excitedly, to her go through the parameters of the account, how important it was to always set aside a certain amount of income (as received at birthday’s and special occasions) to pure savings before handing him his debit card.

With these formalities out of the way, he was very eager to use his debit card, so off we went to the store. A Skylander figurine was the only item on his list. He looked at the price, pulled out the teller slip, which showed his balance on his account and said happily “I can get this one.”

It was a bubble buster better heard from me than to have the embarrassing encounter of disappointment when he found out the same thing at the till. “Plus tax.”

In the long-winded, over the head, explanation of tax that was essentially forgotten by my son as soon as he adjusted his purchasing capacity to a Skylander he could afford, I walked away exhausted and glad I only had to explain GST and not an additional provincial sales tax!

Bottom line, it’s no fun to pay tax. Fortunately, when properly designed, Life, AD&D, Dependent Life, Short, and Long-Term Disability, as well as Critical Illness are designed on an employee group benefit plan to pay out tax-free upon claim. Even better, Pharmacy, Health, Dental, and Vision Care are all NON-TAXABLE benefits in Canada, outside the province of Quebec.

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