Proposed Amendments to the Estate Administration Tax Act
The Ontario Government’s recent Bill 173 (the Budget Bill) deals with, amongst many other things, proposed amendments to Estate Administration Tax Act, 1998 (Schedule 14).
Estate Administration Tax is applied to the value of an estate when the estate’s representative applies to the court for a certificate of appointment of estate trustee (often referred to as probate). Currently, court staff of the Ministry of the Attorney General administer the tax. Bill 173 proposes amendments to the Estate Administration Tax Act to enhance, it has been said, compliance by integrating the administration of this tax with audit and verification functions at the Ministry of Revenue, starting January 1, 2013.
It appears that the proposed amendments include, amongst others, amendments (i) to require an estate representative to give the Minister of Revenue prescribed information about a deceased person, (ii) to provide that it is an offence to fail to give the information or to give false or misleading information, (iii) to authorize the Minister of Revenue to assess taxes imposed under the Act, and (iv) related amendments to provide various rules concerning the administration and enforcement of the Act.
Again, it is being proposed that the amendments will apply in respect of applications for estate certificates that are made on or after January 1, 2013, or on or after such later date as may be prescribed by the Minister of Finance
The standing committee on financial and economic affairs was scheduled to meet on April 21, 2011 to consider Bill 173 and hear submissions on its proposed provisions.
If the amendments to the Estate Administration Tax Act pass, the manner in which the amendments are implemented and the regulations that might arise will be important to follow and consider as they will effect Estate Trustees and advice given by professionals advising Estate Trustees.
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Craig R. Vander Zee – Click here for more information on Craig Vander Zee.