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Ontario to provide estate tax relief for families

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Ontario's Government for the People is proposing to provide tax relief to families when they need it most by reducing and simplifying the Estate Administration Tax.

“We are working to make life easier and more affordable for the people of this province. That starts with giving people relief—particularly in times of worry and grief when they need it the most,” said Vic Fedeli, Minister of Finance.

“This is all about compassion and respect for families, putting people first during a difficult time in their lives,” he added.

The death of a loved one is a difficult time for a family. That is why Minister Fedeli announced today proposed changes to the tax that would, if passed, eliminate the estate tax on the first $50,000 of the value of the estate. All larger taxable estates would receive a tax cut of $250. Ontario currently has one of the highest tax rates.

The government also intends to make it easier to file estate tax returns by extending the filing deadlines from 90 days to 180 days so grieving families have more time to respond to the death of a loved one.

The deadline for filing amendments to the returns would also be extended from 30 days to 60 days.

In addition, the government will continue to explore options to provide further Estate Administration Tax relief, including additional tax relief in respect of charitable donations.

“We're moving to ease the burden on grieving loved ones. It's the compassionate thing to do," said Fedeli. "This is how our government is protecting what matters most.”

Currently, there is no Estate Administration Tax payable on estates of $1,000 or less. For all other taxable estates, the tax is applied at $5 for every $1,000 of the first $50,000 of the value of the estate, and $15 for every $1,000 of the rest of the estate.

The proposed changes would mean the Estate Administration Tax would be eliminated for the first $50,000 of estate value effective Jan. 1, 2020. This would mean that about 2,500 taxable estates won't pay the tax, and the tax would be reduced by $250 for taxable estates larger than $50,000. In 2020, there will be an estimated 30,000 taxable estates.

Ontario intends to extend the deadline for filing information returns from 90 days to 180 days, and amendments on those returns from 30 days to 60 days.

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