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Tax

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Thursday, October 11, 2018 @ 8:22 AM

Courts won’t rewrite tax treaties negotiated by the government tax_treaty_sm

The recent decision of the Tax Court of Canada in Alta Energy Luxembourg S.A.R.L. v. Canada 2018 TCC 152, reaffirms the right of a taxpayer to rely on the original intent behind government policies and confirms that commercial realities should be considered in interpreting tax treaties. Further, the court held that structuring ownership through a fiscal resident of a country with a favourable tax treaty is not, per se, an abuse or misuse of a tax treaty in the absence of some explicit further requirement in the treaty. ... [read more]

Wednesday, October 03, 2018 @ 8:35 AM

Federal Court won’t allow CRA ‘fishing expedition’ fishing_expedition_sm

The Canada Revenue Agency has broad powers to administer and enforce Canada’s tax laws. In the context of a tax audit, the CRA can gather information by inspecting a taxpayer’s books and records and can require taxpayers and third parties to provide information and documents. While these powers are extensive, it must be recalled that the CRA’s powers are defined by provisions of the Income Tax Act and the Excise Tax Act, and the courts are empowered with interpreting this legislation. ... [read more]

Friday, September 28, 2018 @ 8:45 AM

Trustees in the middle when family trust meets family law inthe_middle_sm

Family trusts, like all trusts, are by their nature complex beasts. They create unique rights and obligations between specific actors that originate in the trust obligation itself. ... [read more]

Wednesday, September 26, 2018 @ 11:42 AM

Hitting ‘Goldilocks number’ on taxation of cannabis key to reducing black market: lawyer David Rotfleisch, taxpage.com

As D-Day for the legalization of cannabis edges ever closer, the federal government has released a framework for taxation of the herb and is seeking public input on it. And a legal expert is saying the black market will continue to thrive unless a delicate balance on price and taxation can be found. ... [read more]

Monday, September 24, 2018 @ 10:35 AM

Lax corporate disclosure aids money launderers: C.D. Howe report laundering_money_sm

A recently released report (“Hidden Beneficial Ownership and Control: Canada as a Pawn in the Global Game of Money Laundering”) by Denis Meunier on behalf of the C.D. Howe Institute, concludes that the lack of transparency as to beneficial ownership of corporations and trusts in Canada may lead to international money laundering taking place here. ... [read more]

Monday, September 24, 2018 @ 9:30 AM

Cross-border estate administration: The U.S.-Ontario mix billsCanada_US_sm

Due primarily to the differences between the two tax regimes, in particular taxation on death, there are fewer complications arising for U.S. estates with Ontario connections if there is an outright distribution with no continuing trusts. Typically, an Ontario-resident beneficiary would create no significant complications for a U.S. estate, since the U.S. levies no additional tax on inheritances which are capital distributions payable to non-U.S. Persons and Canada treats such inheritances as gifts, which are not taxable in Canada in the hands of a beneficiary when received. ... [read more]

Friday, September 21, 2018 @ 3:53 PM

Ontario faces ‘uphill battle’ in fight against carbon tax: experts Eric Adams, University of Alberta Faculty of Law

The Ontario government has followed Saskatchewan’s lead in bringing a challenge to its provincial Court of Appeal on the federal government’s carbon tax, arguing the scheme is not within Ottawa’s powers to do so. But constitutional and tax experts are saying both provinces will most likely have a difficult time convincing courts to rule against Ottawa. ... [read more]

Friday, September 21, 2018 @ 8:57 AM

Time runs out as Ontario court bars claim against tax lawyer time_out_sm

Imagine the following scenario. Clients retain tax lawyers to review assessments made by the Canadian Revenue Agency (CRA). Their tax lawyers recommend appealing the CRA assessments. Two years later, the tax lawyers reverse their advice: the merits of the appeal to the CRA are not as strong as once thought. The clients — already invested in pursuing the appeal to the CRA — retain new counsel and continue the litigation. The clients are ultimately found to have tax liability. ... [read more]

Tuesday, September 18, 2018 @ 9:31 AM

Search and seizure of electronic data: too much of a good thing data_security_sm

Seizures of electronic data have become the equivalent of trying to catch trophy fish using bottom trawling nets. Like large, weighted fishing nets dragged across the seafloor, unselectively scooping up everything in their path, seizures of data invariably and easily net their own form of digital bycatch. ... [read more]

Monday, September 17, 2018 @ 2:21 PM - Last Updated: Monday, September 17, 2018 @ 7:56 PM

Ottawa quietly rolls out much-anticipated draft tax law changes on charities’ political activities Finance Minister Bill Morneau

As people left work before the last weekend, Ottawa quietly rolled out its much-anticipated draft changes to the tax legislation governing charities’ political activities. ... [read more]