Now is the right time to become an American Federation of Musicians member. From ragtime to rap, from the early phonograph to today's digital recordings, the AFM has been there for its members. And now there are more benefits available to AFM members than ever before, including a multi-million dollar pension fund, excellent contract protection, instrument and travelers insurance, work referral programs and access to licensed booking agents to keep you working.
As an AFM member, you are part of a membership of more than 80,000 musicians. Experience has proven that collective activity on behalf of individuals with similar interests is the most effective way to achieve a goal. The AFM can negotiate agreements and administer contracts, procure valuable benefits and achieve legislative goals. A single musician has no such power.
The AFM has a proud history of managing change rather than being victimized by it. We find strength in adversity, and when the going gets tough, we get creative - all on your behalf.
Like the industry, the AFM is also changing and evolving, and its policies and programs will move in new directions dictated by its members. As a member, you will determine these directions through your interest and involvement. Your membership card will be your key to participation in governing your union, keeping it responsive to your needs and enabling it to serve you better. To become a member now, visit www.afm.org/join.
March 5, 2020IM -
by Norman Slongo, Member of Local 591 (Thunder Bay, ON)
The Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA) has revised the Tl tax return for tax year 2019. The following are some highlights for musicians who prepare their own tax returns.
As an employee you are limited as to what you can claim for expenses. The deductible expenses you may claim are:
To claim the expenses, you must use the musical instrument expenses line (1776} and the Capital cost allowance for musical instruments line (1777} of form T777, Statement of Employment Expenses. Should you also perform as a self-employed musician, then you must divide your expenses among the different uses. To see how this is reported see Self-employed Musicians.
As a self-employed performer, you will complete the T2125 form Statement of Business or Professional Activities. In Part 7 of this form, you can claim business-use-of-home expenses. This applies only to the area used exclusively as your office/work area related to your earnings as a musician. Vehicle expenses are calculated separately on Chart A of the T2125 form.
Should your gross income reach $30,000 in the year, you are required to register for a GST /HST account and must start charging the purchaser the necessary tax. Some provinces have HST which is a combination of provincial and federal sales.
Normal Slongo is a tax specialist and owner of Slongo Accounting and Tax Service in Thunder Bay, ON. His guest column is provided for informational purposes only, not as a substitute for advice from your personal tax professional.