New property transfer data requirements show it’s time to close bare trust loophole: Weaver

July 25, 2018

VICTORIA, B.C. – Andrew Weaver, leader of the B.C. Green Party, says the government’s move to collect information on beneficial ownership of properties underscores the immediate need to close the bare trust loophole. Bare trusts allow for the transfer of beneficial ownership within trusts. Since no title change occurs, no property transfer tax (PTT) is paid.

“This data collection is a good first step, but the province should proceed with applying property transfer tax to the transfer of beneficial ownership,” said Weaver.

“Speculation is a major driver of the housing affordability crisis. The bare trust loophole incentivizes speculation. Preventing individuals and corporations from using it to avoid paying taxes is low-hanging fruit and should be dealt with immediately. Applying the PTT to beneficial ownership has been done in Ontario and is what is needed to close this loophole once and for all.”

Weaver has called for the closure of the bare trust loophole since 2015. The government first announced its intention to collect additional data on beneficial ownership in the February provincial budget. Today, it announced that it will begin the data collection on September 17, 2018.


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