Your Taxes: Personal Income Tax Deadlines in Nine English Speaking Countries

For those of you international jetsetters preparing your own taxes, it’s wise to keep an eye on the different financial years when you’re preparing your taxes and accounting records.

Screenshot IRS (US) website

I’ve always had a tough time remembering this info when I efile, so I’ve prepared a helpful list of nine English speaking countries (and Taiwan), their fiscal years and tax deadlines for personal filing.

Country Personal Tax Year Personal Taxes Deadline
United States 1 Jan. to 31 Dec. 15 April
United Kingdom 6 April to 5 April 31 October
Australia 1 July to 30 June 31 October
Canada 1 Jan. to 31 Dec. 30 April
New Zealand 1 April to 31 March 7 July
Hong Kong 1 April to 31 March 15 August
Ireland 1 Jan. to 31 Dec. 31 October
South Africa 1 April – 31 March 5 December
Singapore 1 April – 31 March 15 April
Taiwan 1 Jan. to 31 Dec. 31 May

In some countries, the fiscal (tax) year deadline varies. There is also quite a variation in the deadline date, payment methods, even the nomenclature of the ‘personal income tax’. So always do your research thoroughly and consult competent tax and financial authorities before you submit your taxes.

There are stiff penalites for being late with your tax filing or even non-filing. So I cannot stress enough: do your research ahead of time!

If you spot any errors, please contact me and I’ll update this post as a matter of priority. Also, I’d like to link to some competent tax sources online, including the tax authorities, so drop any links and I’ll turn this into a real resource page.

Choose a Credit Repair Company Carefully: Three Important Questions to Ask Yourself

When a person is in debt or facing mounting financial problems, it is tempting to turn to Google and sign up for the first credit repair company that pops out of the search box. But you should ask yourself three basic questions before you sign up, because there are a lot of unscrupulous vendors who are happy to make a dime out of desperate customers. And there are a lot of such companies, don’t fall victim to one of these scams!

credit repair company helps plan your future

Will a credit repair company help you become debt free?

1. Can I trust this credit repair company?

There are a number of markers that need to be checked before you do business with any credit repair service or company. Verify that the company has a phone, email address and physical location. You may not be able to visit the actual address of the company, but calling the telephone number or emailing them will help to determine that the company is real.

Books to Help Repair Your Credit Rating

Since the credit repair company uses a website, it is important to look for four essential pages. First, the disclosure page describes how the company is going to make money from you. Second, a privacy policy page should explain how the site is going to store and use the personal information it gathers. Any credit repair service will gather a lot of sensitive information about clients. Third, look for a terms of service page that explains clearly the details of any agreement a client signs. Fourth, of course, there should be a detailed contact page so that new applicants and existing customers can reach out when necessary. Help usually is provided via a ticket-based system or online chat system these days.

You will be handing over a lot of highly sensitive financial information, account details, and personal data. You also need to know that the data your sending out is properly secured. Look for the ‘https’ at the beginning of the vendor’s website address which means that it is secured by secure encryption. If you find it, you will have some assurance that your data is private.

2. Will they really help me to get my finances under control?

Once you are satisfied that the company is legitimate, you need to look at the website for more information on exactly what skills the team has. It is also important to know how they are going to manage your debts. A successful credit repair company should work hard to win your business.

For any individual debt-related case, there are many details that need to be worked out. However, for prospective customers, many companies provide a FAQ or knowledge-based system that can be searched, so look there for information that will help you understand the typical process.

For example, do they pull your credit card reports from all the ratings companies? Do they examine the reports for negative items and help you deal with them? Negative items may include late or overdue repayments, automobile repossessions, mortgage foreclosures, tax liens, and more. Will they dispute credit items or fraudulent charges for you? Do they identify mistakes and credit report issues that affect your overall credit score?

Many companies can also be searched via the Better Business Bureau where you can find ratings for many companies in this industry. On Google, Facebook, Yelp, you may also find reviews from previous clients as well. Identify themes and common experiences among all the feedback, especially the quality of the customer service.

3. How affordable is a credit repair company really?

Whatever services a credit repair company can provide, you need to determine the fee structure and how it applies to your situation. Many companies charge an initial fee plus a monthly fee to cover basic credit repair services, updating the health of your credit report, and working to improve your overall credit score. Some provide additional levels of service that cover identity fraud, credit score management, and financial management tools.

The fees will often include specialized services as well, so it may be hard to determine the complete cost of your credit repair service. Too often a website or company will tuck their prices away in hard to find places. Or they may require you to complete an initial application process before revealing the costs.

Of course, the real benefit of hiring any credit repair service is to reduce your overall loan costs, clear up your credit profile, and improve your credit score. All of these will result in cost-savings to you because of the lower interest rates that accompany a better credit record. Now, there are many tasks that people perform for themselves – servicing the car, landscaping, basic legal services – but getting advice and practical help for repairing your credit profile is a financially smart move.

If you’re interested in getting help from a credit repair company, reading up on the whole service is worth doing. If you’ve managed to get a good company to help you, what worked? Did you manage to do it all by yourself without using any credit repair company? How did you do the research?

Suggested Reading for Choosing a credit repair company

Credit Saint or Credit Sinner? Review of Credit Services Site

I’ve been asked to review another Credit Services website, this one is called Credit Saint ( and aims to provide a range of credit history repair services, using these words “It means we have the power to offer more service for less money. Combining credit restoration and correction with debt settlement and our latest offerings “mortgage rewards, and auto rewards”.

What is How does it work?

These days there are any number of credit repair agencies busy beavering away at reducing the debt load of the average American with promises such as free debt settlement. This could be seen as a good thing, but as you would guess, there are any number of services, very little regulation, and quite a large demand. Judging by the prices this company are charging, there seems to be a very lucrative market in arranging and rearranging individuals financial and credit related affairs.

credit saint

It’s into this crowded market that Credit Saint LLC has entered. Founded in 2004, Credit Saint LLC has been providing a range of credit related services offline to customers. In fact, the Better Business Bureau rates this company as a “BBB Accredited business since 10/23/2007” and notes the original date. So it’s clear that Credit Saint is now trying to expand its market reach by going online.

Books to Help Repair Your Credit

The Website: Credit Saint Dot Com

A cursory view of the website reveals much about their online strategy: cram as much information into the space as possible, write lots of text, don’t forget to include email, forums, live help, reviews, testimonials, FAQs, programs, appointments, … and so on. Now I’m no expert in credit card related affairs as you’d suspect, but surfing this website, I noticed a number of issues. As an observer and motivated buyer, I’m looking to know three basic things:

  • Can I trust this company/website?
  • Will they be effective in reducing or helping me control my finances?
  • How affordable are they?

So can the website provide this basic information? let’s see…

i. Can I trust this company?

There are a number of ways that a website can take to increase both trust and the appearance of trust: the most obvious being ways to contact with the company in person via phone, email, fax or chat. It’s quite easy to find chat, email and phone numbers, but for a snailmail address, you have to scroll to the bottom of the page. Seems odd but at least it’s there. In addition, there is a Privacy Policy. But I failed to find a number of standard pages: disclosures, TOS, and Sitemap. All of these would help a lot to build trust. There is however a minimal XML sitemap. It was reassuring to see that this company also resorted to using https:// which is the secure way when loading the Get Started page.


This is where I came across the first of the problems with the website: as I clicked through the options to see how responsive the server was I repeatedly got the following 400 Bad Request:

bad request

While the error didn’t occur 100% of the time, I found it frequent enough to warrant mentioning in this review. It’s likely that there’s an error in the URLs, which is perhaps the simplest and most common error. However, I couldn’t verify that this is the case. Unfortunately, this is not the only issue that I need to raise. I also found lots of links that don’t work, on the lefthand sidebar, and on other places throughout the website, even simple links back to the ‘homepage’.

Another major error: security seems apparent as I mentioned, but I really wonder. Have they checked or changed the default passwords for their accounts? What about their FTP account? What about the admin account(s)? I’m not so sure.

ii. Will they be effective in reducing or helping me control my finances?

Given the range of offerings that this website has, I’m tempted to say ‘mmm’. Why? For one simple reason, this website tries to do TOO much: it sells (many products) to clients, it sells to affiliates, it manages employees, it handles the client end, and it also has client managers, which suggests that the business is similarly lacking in focus. While this may or may not be true, it’s always going to be the impression that counts, and as objective outsider, I feel that there are just too many things going on in this website to help ME with MY problems, esp. when some of those things don’t work properly.

When a company goes online, it really risks whatever equity it has built up in its reputation. Why? If your site is simply for show, you risk your image if you launch before you’re ready. That’s important enough. But this website has gone live and isn’t ready. It isn’t even really a beta yet, either. And there are problems with its reliability even before it’s taking business. Remember: Credit Saint is a commercial website, it’s aiming to attract online business. Yet I’m concerned.

iii. How affordable are they?

Taking a look at the charges, I’m surprised how high these charges can be, perhaps that’s because I’ve never used such a service. The base service charges from about $40 per month right up to $99. But I guess when you need things like Collection Removal, Charge Off Removal, Identity Theft Removal, etc.. the money could be worth it as it could save you much more than you’re spending. I do like the fact that the charges are placed upfront, are readable and understandable, and the client can choose an appropriate service for their situation. I think it’s much better for a company to state their charges clearly. Too many websites hide the prices away in the small print if you can find them at all! Whether they are affordable is really upto the client, but as the BBB point out:

Everything a credit repair clinic can do for you legally, you can do for yourself at little or no cost. (source: BBB’s BBB Reliability Report for  Credit Saint, LLC)

Of course, we could do a lot of things for ourselves – gardening, cleaning the car, changing the oil – the truth is we feel more comfortable asking someone (an ‘expert’) to mow the lawn, clean the car, change the oil, write our will, … it’s engrained in the modern world. It’s to this market that I think these charges apply, though it would be nice to see more explicit disclosures on the website, especially about commissions gained from recommending products, services, etc..

What do they say about doing things in haste?

Well, if you forgot, take a look at this site: it bears all the marks of a site made in haste and as such, I feel that I can’t particularly recommend clients using this website until it’s ready. If you do decide to use their service, please contact them via their phone. Why? I’ll give you five good reasons:

1. Amateurish and disorganized

The site is very amateurish, really. It’s quite surprising how many things are just not done. The sidebars alone are enough to give you a headache: the links jump about from page to page, many links don’t work (try ‘Disability’ for example) at all, and others take you to error pages. An other example: the contact information is inconsistent throughout, and is all over the place – sometimes you can find a fax number, sometimes you can’t. The address is on the bottom of the page. Where else? And all the time I was online, lunchtime in most states in the US, the live help was OFFLINE! I only once saw someone come online. Another great idea poorly implemented are the forums: why on earth would you add forums hosted on another URL when you can install them on your own URL on a subdomain at little or no extra server cost. You can also theme them similarly, and integrate them far more closely: I’m thinking Joomla and SMF integration here.

2. Design of site

I noted a number of issues that need to be resolved. To improve SEO of the Credit Saint site, I would suggest at least three steps that the webmaster should look at. First, so many of the pages have generic names: index-4.html etc.. This means nothing to man, beast or Google. At least give the URL a real slug so that we can tell what we are looking at. Secondly, none of the pages have any keywords anywhere or the title tag or the description tag. This is an obvious task that needs to be done. Thirdly, there is no proper sitemap. I had a look at the sitemap.xml which really had no information at all. Not surprisingly, since the site has been online since 2006, there are only 2 pages indexed in Google. Of course, having a duplicate site doesn’t help either. An independent site scored this website saying: “The page at scores 2 out of 5 for its utilization of web technologies which includes analytics, frameworks, syndication and document formatting.” (InvestorBlogger did *much* better – but I KNOW there’s still room for improvement!).

3. Dynamic vs. static

Initially, I thought I was looking at a Joomla site, but I began to suspect that the site was actually coded by hand. So I took a look at the source code. I was shocked to see the entire site is made in tables, including a pagewide table of 742px. Wow! No wonder site optimization is so difficult: the design looks very Web 2.0 but it’s all Web 1.0. I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s got accessibility issues as well. But a dynamically generated site would have other advantages such as it makes incorrect links easy to update everywhere, it is easier to integrate forums, payment carts, shopping modules, etc. that are INTEGRATED into the theme more fully, and create an enhanced and themed experience. Right now, this is missing.

Focus, focus, focus.

In summary, this website desperately needs focus. It needs to answer one simple question, and one simple one only: who is the primary market for this website? All the rest can be handled on subdomains or other domains. This would lead to much greater clarity on the designers and make the task much more manageable. As it is, it’s very much a mishmash of ‘handcoded’ pages, forums, e-commerce and guestbooks (what’s with that?), and an unhappy one at that.

I just looked at the original remit for this review, and I noted the remit asked me to include the tagline “Credit Saint removed my ID Theft”, along with four key words: credit repair, credit restoration, free debt settlement, and credit saint. It’s no surprise then that when I searched for Identity Theft on the website, all I found was those two key words and a link that didn’t work.

I was originally asked to do this site as a review. I didn’t intend it to be a full review. I do hope that the webmasters find the comments useful. I’ll be happy to add or edit the content as mistakes come to light, as I’m sure they will.

More Self Help Reading

Update 1: Though this was intended to be a sponsored ‘review’, Blogsvertise provided no indications of the type of ‘review’ that was required, neither did the advertiser. However, on receipt of this review, it seems that the advertiser doesn’t feel that this review is ‘acceptable’.

Blogsvertise asked me to rewrite the ‘review’ and dress it up, but in all honesty, I can’t. I stand by my comments 100%. Please draw your own conclusions about what kind of service this company really offers.

With payment outstanding from Blogsvertise, this was the last post I did for them. Payment is still unpaid. Blogsvertise is untrustworthy.

Update 2: I’ve noted that the website has made a number of significant improvements all round, in terms of usability, it’s much simpler to use, much of the dead weight has gone, it’s clear the owners have taken on quite a lot of these suggestions. Good for them.

Update 3: Much of the content of this review is no longer valid. All links to Credit Saint have now been removed because this review is now 6 years old.