Objections and Appeals

Frequently Asked Questions About Filing an Objection

How do I file a Notice of Objection?

A Notice of Objection can be filed by completing a Notice of Objection form or by writing a letter to the Director, Advisory, Objections, Appeals and Services Branch. The letter should be signed by the owner of the business or an authorized employee of the company. If a representative is appointed, the taxpayer must provide written authorization. A Notice of Objection may be completed on-line, sent by registered or regular mail, facsimile transmission or may be hand delivered to either the Advisory, Objections, Appeals and Services Branch or any other Ministry of Finance tax office.

What information do I need to provide?

The Notice of Objection must include:

  • the taxpayer's name
  • account or permit number
  • taxation statute under which the assessment or disallowance was issued
  • date and number of the assessment or disallowance
  • period or transaction in question
  • amount of tax or refund, and
  • a clear description of each issue in dispute, fully setting out the facts and reasons for objecting to each issue.

What does it cost to file the Notice of Objection?

There is no fee to file a Notice of Objection.

Do I have to file the Notice of Objection within a specified time frame?

Under an Ontario taxation statute, you must file a Notice of Objection within 180 days (for International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA) objections, within 30 days) from the day the Notice of Assessment, Notice of Reassessment or Statement of Disallowance was mailed or personally delivered to you.

Can I obtain additional time to file my Notice of Objection?

If you have a good reason for needing more than 180 days (30 days for IFTA objections) to file your Notice of Objection, you can apply to the Director of the Objections and Appeals Branch for an extension of time before the 180 days (30 days for IFTA objections) have expired. Extensions are not given for reasons such as vacation, inventory-taking or year-end timing. Further, you may apply for an extension at any time within one year from the mailing date on the Notice of Assessment or the Statement of Disallowance. However, if you apply after the 180-day period (30-day period for IFTA objections), you must be able to demonstrate that it was impossible to file within the 180-day period (30-day period for IFTA objections) and that the Notice of Objection was filed as soon as circumstances permitted. If the explanation provided is not satisfactory, no extension of time will be given and your Notice of Objection will be considered to be invalid.

Do I have to pay the amount assessed that is in dispute while the objection is under review?

Yes, payment is required even if you have filed, or intend to file, a Notice of Objection. There are no provisions in the Ontario tax statutes that allow for the suspension of payment of an amount that has been assessed, but is in dispute, pending the outcome of the Notice of Objection or Notice of Appeal process. Additional interest will be assessed on the principal liability if full payment is not received when the assessed amount is due. Taxpayers who successfully object or appeal will be paid interest on any amounts paid on an assessment, from the dates the payments were made. However, the amount refunded, including interest, will first go to reducing other tax liabilities owed to Ontario before any refund is made to you.

Can any of the tax or interest assessed be forgiven since I don't have the money to pay it?

There are no provisions in the Ontario tax statutes to allow for the reduction of the tax or interest that has been assessed because of the taxpayer's inability to pay. The Appeals Officer can only recommend a variance to the tax or penalty that has been assessed if it is his or her opinion that the amount assessed is in error due to an incorrect application of the law.

Will I be compensated for my costs if I win the objection?

No compensation for costs is granted to a taxpayer who may obtain a favourable resolution at the Notice of Objection stage. The Notice of Objection process is intended to be simple, inexpensive and easily accessible.

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