A large 8x10 14 page farm financial survey package arrived today in the mail. I have a question and if anyone can give a definitive answer, it would be greatly appreciated.
On the front page of the survey it states in a separate boxed area: this survey is conducted under the authority of the Statistics Act, Revised Statutes of Canada, 1985, c. S-19. Completion of this questionnaire is a legal requirement under the Statistics Act. (that’s the warning)
The questionnaire asks about farm structures, land use, cropland, livestock, ownerships, capital investments, leasing, stocks, GIC’s, bonds, RRSP’s, grants, capital sales, other short-term and long-term assets, outstanding debt and from whom, account payables, borrowing, loans (advance payments) program payouts (hail insurance, rebates, BRM, ASRA, cull breeding, compensations, agri-sweet, others), farm revenue and expenses, marketing contracts, agri-invest, etc.
Then on page 13 it asks for financial information for sources other than the farm operation. It asks about family income… everyone in the household. You must report T1 income, other employment income, commissions, personal investments (outside farm partnerships and corporations), CPP, OAS, Child benefits, Universal child care benefits, lists of assets such as cash, stocks, bonds, RRSP’s, non-farm assets such as vehicles, recreational items, total amount of private family debt, etc.
The last page outlines the rules, more or less. Confidentiality, record linkage, data sharing agreements;.... to avoid duplication of enquiry, Statistics Canada has entered into data-sharing agreements with provincial statistical agencies which must keep the data confidential and use
them only for statistical purposes. Statistics Canada will only share data from this survey with those organizations that have demonstrated a requirement to use the data.
Section 11 of the Statistics Act provides for the sharing of information with provincial statistical agencies that meet certain conditions. These agencies must have the legislative authority to collect the same information, on a mandatory basis, and the legislation must provide substantially the same provisions for confidentiality and penalties for disclosure of confidential information as the
Statistic Act. Because these agencies have the legal authority to compel businesses to provide the same information, consent is not requested and farm operations may not object
to the sharing of their data.
data-collection agencies? Who uses the private financial information of farmers and for what purpose? Does the Bank Act allow Statistics Canada to breach financial confidentiality?
How much information does a farmer have to legally answer in this financial survey? Can a husband (as an example) provide private information of a non-farming spouse/child without their
consent? How much information does a farmer legally have to provide and is the survey over-stepping its authority?
Good questions....I am wondering the same things...
We should have a lawyer and an accountant have a look at it and let everyone know what is required.
If anyone gets some answers, post them here....I will see if I can get some thoughts from some experts.