No receipt needed for Microsoft class-action claims; A work-from-home tax break: CBC’s Marketplace Cheat Sheet


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Have you spent most of the year working from home? A tax break might be coming your way

If you were sent away from the office back in March to work from home, it’s likely you’ll qualify for a new tax deduction. According to new rules from the Canadian Revenue Agency, those who worked from home more than 50 per cent of the time over a period of at least four consecutive weeks as a result of the pandemic will be eligible for a deduction. Those who qualify will be able to claim $2 for each day they worked from home during that period, up to a maximum of $400. Read more

The CRA has come up with a new way for Canadians to claim a tax deduction for working from home. (Submitted by Sandy Mangat)

You won’t need a receipt to benefit from this class-action lawsuit

If you bought any PC versions of Microsoft software between 1998 and 2010, you might be eligible for compensation. And depending on the size of your claim, you won’t even need a receipt. The lawsuit alleged that Microsoft and Microsoft Canada were involved in a conspiracy to illegally increase prices for the company’s products. Microsoft agreed to a settlement — capped at $517 million — but denies any wrongdoing and has not admitted liability. Read more

One of the largest class-action settlements in Canada could be worth money in your pocket. 2:21

These nursing homes have the highest COVID-19 death rates in Ontario 

Not all for-profit long-term care homes in Ontario are equal when it comes to COVID-19, according to a new Marketplace investigation and data analysis. The analysis found that both Southbridge and Rykka homes had higher death rates than other for-profit homes in the province. Read more

Protesters gather outside Hawthorne Place Care Centre in Toronto on May 31, 2020. The home is owned by Rykka Care Centres, a nursing home chain with one of the highest COVID-19 death rates in Ontario. (Frank Gunn/The Canadian Press)

Amazon opens pickup depot in Iqaluit, promising dramatically faster shipping

The new partnership with Canadian North will cut delivery times for Amazon Prime members from two to three weeks, down to three to five days. Many Iqaluit shoppers have come to rely on the company, which offers items like non-perishable food, toothpaste, tampons and deodorant at significantly lower prices than local brick-and-mortar stores, with prices driven up by shipping costs, staff wages and power bills. But as Iqaluit Coun. Kyle Sheppard acknowledged, those who lack a credit card, bank account, or the spare money for a Prime membership still won’t be able to benefit from the deal. Read more

Back in the fall, Marketplace investigated where Amazon returns really end up.

Hidden cameras and secret GPS trackers reveal that some products sent back to Amazon Canada are being liquidated by the truckload and even destroyed or sent to the landfill. 11:27

What else is going on?

Canada Post moves up parcel delivery deadlines amid unprecedented holiday demand
Canada Post delivered a record 1.1 million parcels last weekend.

Tight controls on COVID-19 vaccine may limit queue-jumping for the well connected
The NHL came under fire following a report it was looking to buy doses of the vaccine.

Ontario retirement homes push for mandatory COVID-19 testing for caregivers, support workers
Number of retirement home outbreaks up by 70 per cent since September, regulator says.

Federal sickness benefit payouts don’t match spike in COVID-19 cases
Government anticipated 4.9 million workers could need sick leave, but fewer than 250,000 have received benefits so far.

These deli meats been recalled due to a possible Listeria contamination
If you have any Compliments brand Montreal-style smoked meat or Levitts brand corned beef and New York-style pastrami in your fridge, check the dates.

Happy holidays from Marketplace

It’s been a year unlike any other and we’re grateful for the support from our viewers.

Thanks to your tips, we’ve been able to do what we do best all year long.

Over the past few months, Marketplace has investigated what happens to Amazon returns; the crisis in long-term care homesappliance repair rip-offs; the virtually unregulated trade of puppy imports; fighting for airline refunds during the pandemic; racism in the oilsands; pandemic price gouging; and the best and most effective face masks for keeping you safe from COVID-19.

We’ll be back in the new year with new stories and new investigations.

Happy holidays!

-The Marketplace Team

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