Underused Housing Tax (UHT) Penalties and Interest Waived (CRA Update from March 27, 2023)


Dear TLA Members from the USA, UK, Germany, and Australia,

As a Lake Temagami property owner, you are most likely exempt from paying the UHT. A substantial fine can, however, be applied if your UHT form is not filed on time. The good news is that the Canada Revenue Agency recently decided not to apply a fine if your return is filed by October 31, 2023.

Here is a statement from the website:

“The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) understands that there are unique challenges for affected owners in the first year of the Underused Housing Tax Act (UHTA) administration.

To provide more time for affected owners to take necessary actions to comply, the Minister of National Revenue is providing transitional relief to affected owners. The application of penalties and interest under the UHTA for the 2022 calendar year will be waived for any late-filed underused housing tax (UHT) return and for any late-paid UHT payable, provided the return is filed or the UHT is paid by October 31, 2023.

This transitional relief means that although the deadline for filing the UHT return and paying the UHT payable is still April 30, 2023, no penalties or interest will be applied for UHT returns and payments that the CRA receives before November 1, 2023.”

Please click on the following link for further details: www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/news/newsroom/tax-tips/tax-tips-2023/underused-housing-tax-penalties-and-interest-waived.html.


Comments on Revised Amendments to Ontario Regulation 161/17 Regarding Floating Accommodations


Amendments to Ontario Regulation 161/17 under the Public Lands Act (initially proposed by the Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry on February 24, 2023) – which clarified the types of accommodation units that could be used to camp on water over public land, and the conditions that must be met when doing so – were welcomed.

Such changes would help to decrease negative environmental impacts, reduce obstacles to navigation, and ensure that the rights of property owners and other recreational users (e.g., canoeists, boaters) to enjoy these waterways are taken into consideration.

Information on this initiative was shared in a TLA blog posting on March 13, 2023.

The Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry, however, made some concerning modifications to the original proposal on March 16, 2023. These changes would remove several conditions/restrictions that would be beneficial to waterways and many user groups.

Please consider adding your comments to the Environmental Registry of Ontario website (ERO # 019-6590) to request that some of these conditions be reinstated when updates to the Regulation are finalized. Specifically, it is important to indicate that the following conditions should be included among the amendments:

1. reducing the number of days that a person can camp on water over public land (per location, per calendar year), from 21 days to 7 days;

2. increasing the distance that a person camping on water must move their camping unit to a different location, from 100 metres to 1 kilometre; and,

3. prohibiting camping on water within 300 metres of a developed shoreline, including any waterfront structure, dock, boathouse, erosion-control structure, altered shoreline, boat launch, and/or fill.

Feel free to use this message as a reference for the wording of your submission. Comments must be submitted by April 11, 2023.

Note: Before making a submission on the ERO website, you must first create an account. It’s a simple process, requiring only a user name, your e-mail address, and a password.


Ontario Government Proposes Tightening Restrictions for Floating Accommodations


Ontario’s Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry (MNRF) is asking the public to weigh in on proposed changes to how floating accommodations should be used on the province’s waterways.

The Ministry said that it’s seen an increase in the types of vessels being used for overnight accommodation, including floating structures that resemble cottages buoyed by Styrofoam. These floating accommodations are allowed to moor on provincial land as camping units, but they can’t reside on the same tract of public land permanently. They must move every 21 days.

In March 2022, the Ministry sought feedback from the public, Indigenous communities, municipalities, and other stakeholders on how floating accommodations should be used on public lands covered by water. The majority of respondents stated that current rules were too permissive, citing concerns over impacts on water quality, wastewater management, noise pollution, and lack of building permits or property taxes, among other concerns.

Based on these responses, the province has proposed making changes to the conditions that must be met when camping on water. The biggest changes include reducing the number of days someone can camp on water in one location from 21 to seven, requiring them to move to a different location at least one kilometre away, prohibiting camping within 300 metres of a developed shoreline, and redefining camping units as watercraft primarily used for navigation, excluding house-like structures on floatation systems.

More information on these proposed changes can be found at: MNRF Public Lands Act – Regulatory Proposal. Public feedback can be submitted through the Environmental Registry of Ontario (https://ero.ontario.ca/notice/019-6590) until April 11, 2023.

Update on the “Underused Housing Tax” for Non-Canadian Property Owners in the Temagami Area


For Non-Canadian Property Owners:

Below is an update on the “Individual Tax Number” (ITN) and “Underused Housing Tax” (UHT) filing requirements received from a representative of the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA).

Temagami cottage properties seem to be in a tax-exempt area. This can be determined by entering the P0H2H0 postal code (with no space) into an online tool: https://apps.cra-arc.gc.ca/ebci/sres/ext/pub/ntrUhtExpnTl?request_locale=en_CA. The site recommends that you print a copy of the results page for your records and also submit one with your UHT return.

Although, Temagami properties should be exempt from paying tax, both ITN and UHT forms must still be submitted.

You must apply for the ITN (by standard mail only), and will receive one in 4 to 6 weeks. Here’s the link to the form: www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/forms-publications/forms/t1261.html.

The UHT return must also be filed: www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/forms-publications/forms/uht-2900.html. The CRA representative, however, said, “Do NOT wait” for the ITN, but “go ahead and fill out the UHT return” (and submit it without the ITN). Include a note which indicates that the ITN application has already been submitted. Apparently, the CRA can access the ITN database and check on the status of the number at any time. (N.B., Lake Temagami property owners should fall under one, or both, of these exemptions on page 5 of the UHT form: # 630 and/or # 635)

Please note that the deadline for filing the UHT return is April 30th. It can be submitted electronically – or by standard mail. It’s also noteworthy that there is a substantial backlog of returns, and it may take some time to process them.