The Estate Information Return Form, recent changes

Estate Information Return Form

Estate Information Return Form In Ontario

If you’re an Estate Trustee of an estate there are rule changes that came into effect this year you should know about.

“In Ontario, the Estate Trustee must confirm the correct amount of estate administration tax is paid to the Ontario Ministry of Finance,” says Hummingbird Estates and Wills lawyer Ioulia Vinogradova. “The tax paid is based on the value of the assets of the estate.”

She explains that in December of 2014, the Ontario government enforced compliance with the Estate Administration Tax Act, 1998 (EATA), and the Estate Trustee’s duty to confirm and pay the right amount of estate administration tax.

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“From January 1, 2015, all Estate Trustees who receive a Certificate of Appointment as an Estate Trustee, have a duty to file a detailed inventory indicating everything a person owned at death and the value of those assets,” says Ioulia. She explains that to submit this information, the Estate Trustee must file an Estate Information Return Form (EIR Form).

The Estate Information Return Form, recent changes and what it means to the Estate Trustee, Toronto and Vaughan

Change To The Estate Information Return Form

“But on January 1, 2020, the Ontario Government made changes to the reporting requirements,” says Ioulia. “This affects anyone who has applied and received a Certificate of Appointment as an Estate Trustee from a Superior Court in Ontario after January 1, 2020.”

Also on January 1, 2020, the deadline for filing the EIR Form to the Ontario Ministry of Finance changed from 90 days to 180 days of the issuance of the Certificate of Appointment. The time to report changes to the initial information reported on the EIR Form, including adjustments in value or additional asset information, has also changed from 30 days to 60 days.

But, in light of COVID 19 the Ontario government by an order made under s. 7.1 of the Emergency Management and Civil Protection Act has suspended the procedural time periods and limitation periods retroactive to March 16, 2020.

Estate Trustee In Ontario

What Should You Do?

“We recommend that all Estate Trustees keep all relevant records to substantiate the values of the estate assets declared on the EIR Form,” says Ioulia. “Also the Ontario Ministry of Finance does not give out a “clearance certificate” like the one issued by the Canada Revenue Agency to confirm that no tax is owed by the deceased. As such, special consideration should be given before an Estate Trustee makes a final distribution of the assets of an Estate.”

Ioulia says that the audit provisions of the EATA have not changed and that the Ontario Ministry of Finance still has the option to audit any EIR Form filed for up to four years from the date it is filed.

Not Sure What To Do? We Can Help!

Consult with the Wills and Estates lawyers at Hummingbird Lawyers to explore what this means for you as an Estate Trustee.

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Ioulia is an Associate Lawyer with the Hummingbird Lawyers Wills & Estates practice group. Ioulia has a diverse legal background that includes estate, family and civil litigation and real estate practice.

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