Tax - Income Tax - Employment Income
Taxpayer rabbi lived in home legally owned by religious group employer, but he was considered beneficial owner of three-eighths of home. Taxpayer claimed clergy residence deduction amount for value of benefit of five-eighths of home under s. 8(1)(c)(iii) of Income Tax Act. Taxpayer also claimed clergy residence deduction in respect of portion of home he owned pursuant to s. 8(1)(c)(iv) of Act. Minister of National Revenue disallowed taxpayer’s claimed deduction under s. 8(1)(c)(iv) of Act on basis that clergy residence deductions could not be claimed under both sections. Taxpayer appealed. Appeal dismissed. Ordinary definition of word “or”, comma placement, and French version of provision showed that word “or” in s. 8(1)(c)(iii) of Act was disjunctive. Taxpayer was not entitled to claim clergy expenses pursuant to both ss. 8(1)(c)(iii) and 8(1)(c)(iv) of Act. There was nothing in context of s. 8(1) of Act that required “or” to be interpreted as conjunctive. Although result from taxpayer’s unique situation somewhat strayed from Parliament’s original intention, it did not defeat it, and purposive analysis did not support interpreting “or” as conjunctive.
Hoch v. The Queen (2019), 2019 CarswellNat 1509, 2019 TCC 99, Ronald MacPhee J. (T.C.C. [General Procedure]).
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