CRA 503.0 (or “why can’t I file T4 slips over the holidays?!”)

Every year, like clockwork, between Christmas and New Year’s Day, as work is quieter than normal and the financial year-end approaches, I think “I should get a jump of end of year payroll, and file T4 slips right now.”

And every year I hit the brick wall that is Canada Revenue Agency’s “systems maintenance” that prevents e-filing of T4s between December 21 and January 7.

Screen shot of CRA website showing 503.0 error

What inevitably happens is that, with my momentum quashed, I set the task aside and then realize, after the February 28 deadline, that I’ve waited too long.