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Canadian Paystubs

Have you ever looked at your pay stub and felt like you were studying a foreign language? Well, you’re not alone. Many Canadians are confused by paystubs—after all, those deductions and figures can make things confusing. But no need to worry; we are here to break it down for you. Understanding your paystub is essential, and that’s not only because you need to know how much you will take home but also because you should be assured that everything is in order. If you use a paystub generator, life will be much easier.

Let’s understand some of the standard deductions on a Canadian pay stub and what they mean.

How Canadian Paystubs Differ from Other Countries?

As a newcomer to Canada, knowing how Canadian laws work regarding wages and deductions is important. Before you start working, you should keep in mind that the salary or wage you negotiate is not what is going to be in your bank account at the end of each pay period. Your employer must make some deductions from your gross income, so the amount you receive may be less than expected.

Understanding Your Pay Stub

A pay stub is more of an elaborated receipt of your earnings and deductions. It shows your gross pay, which is what you earn before any deductions, and your net pay, which is what you actually take home after all deductions. Reviewing your pay stub regularly will allow you to find any possible mistakes and understand where your money is spent.

The amount paid to you for the current pay period—whether weekly, biweekly, twice a month, or monthly—would usually be the first line on your pay stub and is often the most self-explanatory figure.


Your employer can deduct certain amounts from your salary before handing them to you. Some serve to finance public systems, and others are given so that you can receive support at different stages in your life, for example, during unemployment, parental leave, or retirement.

And there are some deductions the employer can make from your pay as an employee—deductions:

  • Required by federal law such as taxes and employment insurance premium
  • Authorized by a court order like child support payments
  • Authorized by a collective agreement such as union dues
  • Intention to collect any overpaid wages

As an employee, you will also be allowed to give your employer consent to deduct other items, among them:

  • Charitable donations
  • Savings plan contributions
  • Medical and dental premiums
  • Life insurance and long-term disability premiums
  • Pension plan

For your authorization to be valid, it must be in writing, and the deductions’ specific amounts, purpose, and frequency must be outlined. This ensures you know what you are signing and how and when it will affect your pay. Note that your employer can’t make you sign an authorization. You must willingly agree.

How to Access Your Paystubs Online in Canada?

Common Deductions in Canada

Deductions that are usually withheld from the payrolls of most employees in Canada include the Canada Pension Plan or Quebec Pension Plan, Employment Insurance, and income tax withholdings.

Canada Pension Plan (CPP) is a public-run plan that provides a taxable pension to replace part of one’s earnings after retirement. Quebec has its own pension plan, and employers and workers in Quebec must contribute to QPP instead of CPP.

The maximum pensionable earning under the CPP for 2023 is $66,000. The basic exemption amount is $3,500, and the employee and employer contribution rates for 2023 will be 5.95%.

This means that your contribution to the CPP for the year will be equivalent to ($66,000 – $3,500) x 5.95/100 = $3,718.75 if your earnings exceed $66,000 annually. Otherwise, your contribution to CPP equals (income—$3,500) x 5.95/100.

Employment Insurance ensures your employment earnings and provides temporary financial support to eligible people who have lost their employment or cannot work.

The maximum insurable earnings for 2023 is 1.63 percent, and the maximum insurable earnings amount is $61,500.

This means that if you have an insurable annual income of $61,500 or higher, you will have to pay $61,500 x 1.63/100 = $1,002.45 annually in EI premiums.

Income Tax deductions are owed to the government by your employer. People and businesses are required by law to pay taxes to sustain and enhance the services that are publicly funded.

Your salary will determine the percentage of income tax to be deducted from your salary. The federal government and the provincial governments have different tax rates. Therefore, your total income tax liability determines how much you make yearly and the province you stay in.

How to Read Your Canadian Paystub?

How Can You Read Your Pay Stub?

A pay stub may vary depending on your employer, but all typically include the same sections. Look for your gross pay, net pay, and all the different deductions. You may see common abbreviations, such as CPP for Canada Pension Plan and EI for Employment Insurance.

Tax Season Consideration

Accurate deductions when filing your taxes are important. Paystub information feeds directly into the T4 slips, which will be needed for your tax return. Keeping an eye on deductions throughout the year can help save headaches during tax season.


Understanding the common deductions on Canadian paystubs is crucial for employees to interpret their earnings and financial standing accurately. By familiarizing themselves with typical deductions such as income tax, CPP, and EI contributions, individuals can ensure their paystubs reflect their correct entitlements and obligations. Tools like a paystub generator Canada, Canada pay stub, and Canada paystub calculator can simplify this process, providing clarity and accuracy.

How to Spot Errors on Your Canadian Paystub?


What are the main deductions on a Canadian paystub?


The main deductions typically include federal and provincial taxes, Employment Insurance (EI) premiums, and Canada Pension Plan (CPP) contributions.

How is the amount for federal and provincial taxes determined?


Federal and provincial tax deductions are based on income levels and tax brackets, as well as any personal tax credits or deductions claimed on the TD1 form.

What is the purpose of the Employment Insurance (EI) deduction?


The EI deduction funds the Employment Insurance program, providing temporary financial assistance to unemployed Canadians, maternity leave benefits, and more.

How is the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) contribution calculated?


CPP contributions are calculated as a percentage of your earnings up to an annual maximum limit, with both employees and employers required to contribute.

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