The CTF’s 69th Annual Tax Conference takes place at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from Sunday, November 19th to Tuesday, November 21st, 2017. Osler’s Tax Department is represented at the conference, speaking on various panels and in workshops.
Equity-Based Compensation & Stock Options
This session will explore a variety of equity based compensation alternatives including stock options, share purchase plans and phantom based stock plans and will discuss relevant factors to be taken into account when designing and implementing tax effective equity based compensation. The session will also consider recent developments and their impact on equity based compensation and will highlight relevant tax considerations for emerging companies.
Presenter: Dov Begun
The Multilateral Instrument: A Canadian Perspective
In 2016 the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) released the text and explanatory notes of the Multilateral Convention to Implement Tax Treaty Related Measures to Prevent Base Erosion and Profit Shifting (BEPS) under BEPS Action 15 (the MLI). The MLI is to be applied alongside existing tax treaties, modifying their application in order to implement certain BEPS measures, without the need for separate bilateral treaty negotiations. The BEPS measures covered by the MLI include: (i) Action 2 on hybrid mismatch arrangements, (ii) Action 6 on preventing treaty abuse, (iii) Action 7 on the artificial avoidance of permanent establishment (PE) status; and (iv) Action 14 on dispute resolution.
The MLI constitutes a significant change in international taxation and will have an important impact on the taxation of multinational companies given the expectation that it may amend as many as 2000 tax treaties. Since June 7, 2017, Canada at least 69 other jurisdictions have signed the MLI and released their preliminary positions and reservations. This presentation will review the key provisions of the MLI and examine, by way of examples, when and how the MLI may apply to modify certain aspects of Canadian tax treaties both based on Canada’s announced MLI positions and on potential changes to those positions, given the choices made by some of Canada`s most important treaty partners.
Presenter: Patrick Marley
What is Tax Avoidance?
What is avoidance? We have unacceptable evasion and acceptable tax planning. If everything is there for the tax authorities to see, it is currently acceptable planning. Is there some level of planning that is so aggressive that it is no longer acceptable? How do we draw the line between acceptable planning (contribution to an RRSP) and unacceptable avoidance? If it is in accordance with the Act, how do we recognize it? If some level of aggressive planning is unacceptable how to we stop it? Do we penalize it? For example, should the Act impose a penalty if a transaction is subject to the GAAR?
Presenter: Monica Biringer
The trust relationship (not a legal entity but a contractual relationship) presents tax practitioners with a host of complex and evolving cross-border tax issues in connection with trust and trust-like business arrangements for financial institutions, pension funds, and investment funds as well as family trusts. In regards to such arrangements, this session will address:
- Characterization Issues – distinguishing foreign trusts from other types of arrangements
- Residence issues – what makes a trust “foreign” – common law and deemed residence rules
- Inbound and outbound tax issues, involving: treaty benefits, anti-hybrid rules, foreign tax credits, employee benefit/pension trusts and commercial trusts
- Offshore disclosure regimes – how FATCA and CRS have grappled with domestic and foreign trusts
Presenter: Matias Milet
Transaction Structuring: A Case Study
Presenter: Colena Der