212.1 look-through and trusts

Section 212.1 of the Income Tax Act (Canada) is an anti-avoidance rule that applies in circumstances similar to those for section 84.1. With section 212.1, however, only PUC (and not ACB) is relevant as far as the subject shares are concerned.

In 2018, Finance introduced look-through rules so that a trust in effect is ignored for the purposes of section 212.1 (see subsections (5) to (7)). The look-through means that a pipeline with a trust with non-resident beneficiaries can be problematic.

The concerns extend to inter vivos trusts as well.

Demner and Lamothe, “Section 212.1 Lookthrough Rules Create Issues for Trusts with Non-Resident Beneficiaries” Tax for the Owner-Manager 19:2 (April 2019)

May 15, 2020 Postscript Finance has issued a comfort letter regarding this issue. See Demner and Lamothe “Section 212.1 Post Mortem Pipeline Comfort Letter” Tax for the Owner-Manager 20:2 (April 2020)

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