Author Topic: Province of Residence for Provincial Income Tax Purposes - FIFO worker  (Read 205 times)

nrcool24

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Hi all,

My situation is as follows: I live in and hold residence in BC (at my parent's place). I took a new job working FIFO (fly in/fly out) at a work camp up in Nunavut. Flight point for us is in Montreal, meaning that my employer pays for my flights to Nunavut to and from Montreal only. I am free to live wherever I want, but if I want to continue living in Vancouver I have to pay out of pocket to get myself there every few weeks. I filled out a Nunavut TD1 and am on a 2/2 roster.

As I understand, the way provincial income tax obligations are determined is by the province a person resides in on Dec 31st of that year. As I understand there are also other factors in determining what province a person "resides" in. For example I wouldn't expect to file as a resident of Nunavut even though I may happen to be "living" in Nunavut (in a work camp) on Dec 31st.

I am thinking about renting a shared apartment in Montreal. I am also aware that if I become a resident of Quebec, my income tax obligations are much higher compared to BC.

-I intend to spend the majority of my off time in Montreal for as long as I have this job, but plan to come back to BC frequently. I intend to move back once I quit.
-I do not reasonably know how long I will work this job, probably in the area of 1-3 years
-I have a BC drivers license and pay car insurance in BC
-I do not know where I will physically be on Dec 31st, but if I am off work I can be in BC

If I get this apartment, can I reasonably continue to claim residence in BC? Do any other FIFO workers have experience in this area?
« Last Edit: June 07, 2018, 10:06:53 PM by nrcool24 »

FIRE Artist

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Not legally. If you have a lease in your name in Montreal, and no stronger evidence of primary residence elsewhere to make the claim that the Montreal place is for vacation only, you will need to switch your residence. Also, if you intended to use Quebec health services you will need to get your health card for that province.

I believe the only people who can legally do what you are describing are university students from out of province. 

It isnít a matter of where you physically are on December 31st.

RichMoose

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You would almost certainly be a resident of Quebec if you follow your plan.

Read: https://www.canada.ca/en/revenue-agency/services/tax/technical-information/income-tax/income-tax-folios-index/series-5-international-residency/folio-1-residency/income-tax-folio-s5-f1-c1-determining-individual-s-residence-status.html

Sections 1.2, 1.3, 1.11, and 1.14 are applicable here.

Since you are rent-free in Vancouver, my suggestion would be to rent/stay in Montreal for no more than 6 months. That way you can enjoy Montreal, reduce some of the travel costs and travel time, and still be considered a B.C. resident.
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