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Overview Of The Property Transfer Tax Act

In This Volume

On application to register a “taxable transaction” (such as a transfer of an estate in fee simple) at the land title office, a transferee must file the property transfer tax return prescribed by the Act and pay the property transfer tax imposed to the Ministry of Finance. The Act sets out the rate of property transfer tax and makes provision for calculating tax credits, making refunds, and exempting certain taxable transactions. An administrator appointed under the Act may make their own assessment of tax owing for a transaction, and there is a procedure by which a taxpayer can object to, appeal from, or obtain arbitration of such an assessment. The Act also sets out extensive provisions for recovering unpaid property transfer taxes.


The Property Taxation Branch, Ministry of Finance administers the Act, but a transferee must pay property transfer taxes to the land title office in accordance with s. 2 of the Act when registering a taxable transaction. The transferee must provide a completed and signed property transfer tax form whether or not the transaction is eligible for a tax exemption under the Act; the only way in which a transferee can claim an exemption is by completing and signing the property transfer tax return. Where default is made on the payment of taxes under the Act, the administrator has two options for recovering the taxes which may involve land title office applications. Under s. 26 the administrator may issue a certificate for filing with the Supreme Court. Once filed, the certificate has the same force and effect as a judgment and may be filed against the transferee’s title to land. Alternatively, under s. 28 the administrator may recover unpaid taxes by applying under the Land Title Act to register a prescribed lien form in the same manner as a charge is registered. A land title office must provide the administrator with assistance and access to its records free of charge (s. 33(1)).


The Property Taxation Branch, Ministry of Finance, produces Bulletins on a number of specific aspects of the Property Transfer Tax Act. These bulletins may be accessed at taxes/property-taxes/property-transfer-tax/publications.

Cross references to Bulletins that are relevant to the materials in this chapter are referenced under specific sections of the Act.