Ontario civil | Tax | General principles | Constitutional issues
Taxpayers brought application for declaration that sections of Income Tax Act, Excise Tax Act and Ontario Business Corporations Act were of no force or effect because they infringed s. 7 of Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms, and sought return of amounts allegedly paid on account of withholdings, HST and accounting fees, and tort damages. Application judge dismissed application as taxpayers did not provide any factual or legal basis for claims. Judge noted that s. 7 of Charter did not apply to financial interests. Judge found that courts had rejected suggestion that payment of taxes was matter of choice or that income tax legislation was arbitrary. Judge did not find it necessary to go so far as to characterize taxpayers as organized pseudolegal commercial argument litigants. Taxpayers appealed. Appeal dismissed. Taxpayers were treated fairly and were provided with opportunity to file proper material with proper foundation. Taxpayers’ case was perplexing. Taxpayers’ assertions were based on selective reading of words and phrases in Charter, international covenants, and Supreme Court of Canada decisions, none of which, properly interpreted, supported their radical positions. As long as taxpayers lived in Canada, they were subject to federal and provincial laws that applied to residents of Canada, including Income Tax Act.
Howard v. Attorney General of Canada (2019), 2019 CarswellOnt 6473, 2019 ONCA 351, P. Lauwers J.A., G. Pardu J.A., and I.V.B. Nordheimer J.A. (Ont. C.A.); affirmed (2018), 2018 CarswellOnt 1329, 2018 ONSC 785, A.D. Grace J. (Ont. S.C.J.).
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