Canada: Canadian Government Moves To Implement Long Overdue Technical Tax Amendments

Last Updated: October 29 2012
Article by Kim G C Moody

On October 24, 2012, the Minister of Finance tabled a detailed Notice of Ways and Means Motion ("NWMM") to implement technical tax amendments. Many of the amendments were proposed approximately 10 years ago. We have previously written on how the Government of Canada develops and implements tax legislation in our February 1, 2012 blog . As we noted in that blog, the fact that there has been proposed tax legislation in existence for such a long time has been challenging. The long outstanding proposed legislation appears to be close to being passed into law and is very welcome news.

The NWMM is only 947 pages long. Wow... that's it? While that is not quite to the standard of Tolstoy's War and Peace, it certainly puts Hemingway's The Old Man and the Sea to shame. We should be able to get through that over a nice glass (case) of wine. The Explanatory Notes are only 521 pages... thank goodness... anything over 600 pages would have been too much wine! The approximately 1,500 pages of material certainly provides "black and white" new rules... or as we tax practitioners say "... 50 shades of grey...".

Joking aside (yes... that is as good as it gets for humour in our tax world), the NWMM contains a tremendous amount of proposed legislation. Accordingly, there is no way that we could possibly give justice to how massive the proposals are with this short discussion.

Notwithstanding, here are some of the highlights:

1. Restrictive covenants - proposed section 56.4 and related amendments

The taxation of restrictive covenant receipts was first proposed on October 7, 2003. Yes, that is nine years ago. Since that time, there have been a number of changes to the proposed legislation. Our firm wrote a paper on the proposed amendments for the Canadian Tax Foundation's 2008 National Conference and you will find it here. We also wrote about it in our blog of July 20, 2010 given that the Department of Finance released additional amendments to proposed section 56.4 after we wrote our paper. The October 24, 2012 NWMM proposes even further amendments to these rules. For the technically inclined, the following appears to be some of the amendments that we have noted in our preliminary review:

  1. There are changes to the exception to the full income inclusion rule under proposed paragraph 56.4(3)(c).
  2. The previous exception to the "deemed receipt" rule under former proposed subsections 56.4(8) and (8.1) appears to have been collapsed into the new version of subsection 56.4(7). The new expanded proposed subsection 56.4(7) is much more voluminous and will need some further digestion in the days to come to determine its proposed impact.
  3. The rules under former proposed subsection 56.4(9) appears to have been eliminated in its entirety. Former proposed subsection 56.4(9) provided rules that would have applied if section 68 (the "deemed receipt" provision) applies to a taxpayer's grant of a restrictive covenant solely because all or a portion of the consideration in respect of the restrictive covenant is received or receivable by a non-arm's length individual, or by another taxpayer in which the non-arm's length individual holds, directly or indirectly, an interest. This elimination is a very interesting development.
  4. Changes to the various election mechanisms... practitioners will need to carefully review how elections are to be filed since the latest amendments - including the "coming–into-force" provisions - have changed from the last round of amendments.

2. Non-resident trust proposals

These proposals were first introduced in the 1999 Federal Budget and now appear to nearing the end of the road. If passed, it will significantly broaden the taxation impact of Canadians who directly or indirectly are involved with non-resident trusts.

3. Changes to EPSPs and RCAs

We previously blogged about these changes in our April 5, 2012 blog and the government is moving to pass these proposals into law.

4. Foreign affiliates

Changes to the taxation of foreign affiliates has been proposed for quite some time. While beyond the scope of this blog, readers should be aware that significant changes are being made.

5. Significant trust amendments

Again, well beyond the scope of this update, there are numerous technical amendments to the taxation of personal and other trusts.

6. Shareholder loan amendments

Numerous technical amendments to the taxation treatment of direct or indirect shareholder loans are proposed.

7. Deductibility of contingent amounts - new section 143.4

We previously discussed these proposals in our March 21, 2011 blog. New section 143.4 will have a significant impact on the deductibility of certain expenditures.

8. Revisions to the personal services business rules

We previously discussed these proposals in our November 1, 2011 blog. These proposals will have a dramatically negative impact for persons who carry on a personal services business through a corporation.

9. The aggressive tax reporting rules

We have previously discussed these proposed reporting rules in our March 5, 2010 and October 14, 2010 blogs. These rules will have a significant impact on the tax community.

10. Other

There are so many other technical amendments that it is impossible to detail all of them here. While many of the proposed amendments are controversial, it will be welcome to obtain certainty on the passing of the proposed amendments so that we can give sound tax advice as opposed to dealing with the uncertainty of proposals that are not yet passed but have retroactive effect.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Kim G C Moody
In association with
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Register for Access and our Free Biweekly Alert for
This service is completely free. Access 250,000 archived articles from 100+ countries and get a personalised email twice a week covering developments (and yes, our lawyers like to think you’ve read our Disclaimer).
Email Address
Company Name
Confirm Password
Mondaq Topics -- Select your Interests
 Law Performance
 Law Practice
 Media & IT
 Real Estate
 Wealth Mgt
Asia Pacific
European Union
Latin America
Middle East
United States
Worldwide Updates
Check to state you have read and
agree to our Terms and Conditions

Terms & Conditions and Privacy Statement (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd and as a user you are granted a non-exclusive, revocable license to access the Website under its terms and conditions of use. Your use of the Website constitutes your agreement to the following terms and conditions of use. Mondaq Ltd may terminate your use of the Website if you are in breach of these terms and conditions or if Mondaq Ltd decides to terminate your license of use for whatever reason.

Use of

You may use the Website but are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the content and articles available (the Content). You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these terms & conditions or with the prior written consent of Mondaq Ltd. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information about’s content, users or contributors in order to offer them any services or products which compete directly or indirectly with Mondaq Ltd’s services and products.


Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the documents and related graphics published on this server for any purpose. All such documents and related graphics are provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers hereby disclaim all warranties and conditions with regard to this information, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. In no event shall Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use or performance of information available from this server.

The documents and related graphics published on this server could include technical inaccuracies or typographical errors. Changes are periodically added to the information herein. Mondaq Ltd and/or its respective suppliers may make improvements and/or changes in the product(s) and/or the program(s) described herein at any time.


Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including what sort of information you are interested in, for three primary purposes:

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, newsletter alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our information providers who provide information free for your use.

Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) do not sell or provide your details to third parties other than information providers. The reason we provide our information providers with this information is so that they can measure the response their articles are receiving and provide you with information about their products and services.

If you do not want us to provide your name and email address you may opt out by clicking here .

If you do not wish to receive any future announcements of products and services offered by Mondaq by clicking here .

Information Collection and Use

We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.


A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.


This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.


If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.


This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.