Notices of Tax Treaty Developments - Status of Tax Treaties

Protocol Amending the Convention Between Canada and the United States of America With Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital 

Diplomatic Notes:  Annex A to the Convention

September 21, 2007


This electronic version is provided for ease of reference only and has no official sanction.


Note no. JLAB-0111

Excellency,

I have the honor to refer to the Protocol (the "Protocol") done today between Canada and the United States of America amending the Convention with Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital done at Washington on 26 September 1980, as amended by the Protocols done on 14 June 1983, 28 March 1984, 17 March 1995, and 29 July 1997 (the "Convention"), and to propose on behalf of the Government of Canada the following:

In respect of any case where the competent authorities have endeavored but are unable to reach a complete agreement under Article XXVI (Mutual Agreement Procedure) of the Convention regarding the application of one or more of the following Articles of the Convention: IV (Residence) (but only insofar as it relates to the residence of a natural person), V (Permanent Establishment), VII (Business Profits), IX (Related Persons), and XII (Royalties) (but only (i) insofar as Article XII might apply in transactions involving related persons to whom Article IX might apply, or (ii) to an allocation of amounts between royalties that are taxable under paragraph 2 thereof and royalties that are exempt under paragraph 3 thereof), binding arbitration shall be used to determine such application, unless the competent authorities agree that the particular case is not suitable for determination by arbitration. In addition, the competent authorities may, on an ad hoc basis, agree that binding arbitration shall be used in respect of any other matter to which Article XXVI applies. If an arbitration proceeding (the "Proceeding") under paragraph 6 of Article XXVI commences, the following rules and procedures shall apply:

1. The Proceeding shall be conducted in the manner prescribed by, and subject to the requirements of, paragraphs 6 and 7 of Article XXVI and these rules and procedures, as modified or supplemented by any other rules and procedures agreed upon by the competent authorities pursuant to paragraph 17 below.

2. The determination reached by an arbitration board in the Proceeding shall be limited to a determination regarding the amount of income, expense or tax reportable to the Contracting States.

3. Notwithstanding the initiation of the Proceeding, the competent authorities may reach a mutual agreement to resolve a case and terminate the Proceeding. Correspondingly, a concerned person may withdraw a request for the competent authorities to engage in the Mutual Agreement Procedure (and thereby terminate the Proceeding) at any time.

4. The requirements of subparagraph 7(d) of Article XXVI shall be met when the competent authorities have each received from each concerned person a notarized statement agreeing that the concerned person and each person acting on the concerned person's behalf, shall not disclose to any other person any information received during the course of the Proceeding from either Contracting State or the arbitration board, other than the determination of the Proceeding. A concerned person that has the legal authority to bind any other concerned person(s) on this matter may do so in a comprehensive notarized statement.

5. Each Contracting State shall have 60 days from the date on which the Proceeding begins to send a written communication to the other Contracting State appointing one member of the arbitration board. Within 60 days of the date on which the second such communication is sent, the two members appointed by the Contracting States shall appoint a third member, who shall serve as chair of the board. If either Contracting State fails to appoint a member, or if the members appointed by the Contracting States fail to agree upon the third member in the manner prescribed by this paragraph, a Contracting State shall ask the highest ranking member of the Secretariat at the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) who is not a citizen of either Contracting State, to appoint the remaining member(s) by written notice to both Contracting States within 60 days of the date of such failure. The competent authorities shall develop a non-exclusive list of individuals with familiarity in international tax matters who may potentially serve as the chair of the board.

6. The arbitration board may adopt any procedures necessary for the conduct of its business, provided that the procedures are not inconsistent with any provision of Article XXVI or this note.

7. Each of the Contracting States shall be permitted to submit, within 60 days of the appointment of the chair of the arbitration board, a proposed resolution describing the proposed disposition of the specific monetary amounts of income, expense or taxation at issue in the case, and a supporting position paper, for consideration by the arbitration board. Copies of the proposed resolution and supporting position paper shall be provided by the board to the other Contracting State on the date on which the later of the submissions is submitted to the board. In the event that only one Contracting State submits a proposed resolution within the allotted time, then that proposed resolution shall be deemed to be the determination of the board in that case and the Proceeding shall be terminated. Each of the Contracting States may, if it so desires, submit a reply submission to the board within 120 days of the appointment of its chair, to address any points raised by the proposed resolution or position paper submitted by the other Contracting State. Additional information may be submitted to the arbitration board only at its request, and copies of the board's request and the Contracting State's response shall be provided to the other Contracting State on the date on which the request or the response is submitted. Except for logistical matters such as those identified in paragraphs 12, 14 and 15 below, all communications from the Contracting States to the arbitration board, and vice versa, shall take place only through written communications between the designated competent authorities and the chair of the board.

8. The arbitration board shall deliver a determination in writing to the Contracting States within six months of the appointment of its chair. The board shall adopt as its determination one of the proposed resolutions submitted by the Contracting States.

9. In making its determination, the arbitration board shall apply, as necessary: (1) the provisions of the Convention as amended; (2) any agreed commentaries or explanations of the Contracting States concerning the Convention as amended; (3) the laws of the Contracting States to the extent they are not inconsistent with each other; and (4) any OECD Commentary, Guidelines or Reports regarding relevant analogous portions of the OECD Model Tax Convention.

10. The determination of the arbitration board in a particular case shall be binding on the Contracting States. The determination of the board shall not state a rationale. It shall have no precedential value.

11. As provided in subparagraph 7(e) of Article XXVI, the determination of an arbitration board shall constitute a resolution by mutual agreement under this Article. Each concerned person must, within 30 days of receiving the determination of the board from the competent authority to which the case was first presented, advise that competent authority whether that concerned person accepts the determination of the board. If any concerned person fails to so advise the relevant competent authority within this time frame, the determination of the board shall be considered not to have been accepted in that case. Where the determination of the board is not accepted, the case may not subsequently be the subject of a Proceeding.

12. Any meeting(s) of the arbitration board shall be in facilities provided by the Contracting State whose competent authority initiated the mutual agreement proceedings in the case.

13. The treatment of any associated interest or penalties shall be determined by applicable domestic law of the Contracting State(s) concerned.

14. No information relating to the Proceeding (including the board's determination) may be disclosed by the members of the arbitration board or their staffs or by either competent authority, except as permitted by the Convention and the domestic laws of the Contracting States. In addition, all material prepared in the course of, or relating to, the Proceeding shall be considered to be information exchanged between the Contracting States. The Contracting States shall ensure that all members of the arbitration board and their staffs sign and send to each Contracting State notarized statements, prior to their acting in the arbitration proceeding, in which they agree to abide by and be subject to the confidentiality and nondisclosure provisions of Articles XXVI and XXVII of the Convention and the applicable domestic laws of the Contracting States. In the event those provisions conflict, the most restrictive condition shall apply.

15. The fees and expenses of members of the arbitration board shall be set in accordance with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) Schedule of Fees for arbitrators, as in effect on the date on which the arbitration proceedings begin, and shall be borne equally by the Contracting States. Any fees for language translation shall also be borne equally by the Contracting States. Meeting facilities, related resources, financial management, other logistical support, and general administrative coordination of the Proceeding shall be provided, at its own cost, by the Contracting State whose competent authority initiated the mutual agreement proceedings in the case. Any other costs shall be borne by the Contracting State that incurs them.

16. For purposes of paragraphs 6 and 7 of Article XXVI and this note, each competent authority shall confirm in writing to the other competent authority and to the concerned person(s) the date of its receipt of the information necessary to undertake substantive consideration for a mutual agreement. Such information shall be:

a) in the United States, the information required to be submitted to the U.S. competent authority under Revenue Procedure 2006-54, section 4.05 (or any applicable analogous provisions) and, for cases initially submitted as a request for an Advance Pricing Agreement, the information required to be submitted to the Internal Revenue Service under Revenue Procedure 2006-9, section 4 (or any applicable analogous provisions), and

b) in Canada, the information required to be submitted to Canadian competent authority under Information Circular 71-17 (or any applicable successor publication).

However, this information shall not be considered received until both competent authorities have received copies of all materials submitted to either Contracting State by the concerned person(s) in connection with the mutual agreement procedure.

17. The competent authorities of the Contracting States may modify or supplement the above rules and procedures as necessary to more effectively implement the intent of paragraph 6 of Article XXVI to eliminate double taxation.

If the above proposal is acceptable to your Government, I further propose that this Note, which is authentic in English and in French, and your reply Note reflecting such acceptance shall constitute an agreement between our two Governments which shall enter into force on the date of entry into force of the Protocol and shall be annexed to the Convention as Annex A thereto and shall therefore be an integral part of the Convention.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurance of my highest consideration.

Maxime Bernier


Minister of Foreign Affairs


Excellency,

I have the honour to acknowledge receipt of your Note No. JLAB-0111 dated September 21, 2007, which states in its entirety as follows:

Excellency,

I have the honor to refer to the Protocol (the "Protocol") done today between Canada and the United States of America amending the Convention with Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital done at Washington on 26 September 1980, as amended by the Protocols done on 14 June 1983, 28 March 1984, 17 March 1995, and 29 July 1997 (the "Convention"), and to propose on behalf of the Government of Canada the following:

In respect of any case where the competent authorities have endeavored but are unable to reach a complete agreement under Article XXVI (Mutual Agreement Procedure) of the Convention regarding the application of one or more of the following Articles of the Convention: IV (Residence) (but only insofar as it relates to the residence of a natural person), V (Permanent Establishment), VII (Business Profits), IX (Related Persons), and XII (Royalties) (but only (i) insofar as Article XII might apply in transactions involving related persons to whom Article IX might apply, or (ii) to an allocation of amounts between royalties that are taxable under paragraph 2 thereof and royalties that are exempt under paragraph 3 thereof), binding arbitration shall be used to determine such application, unless the competent authorities agree that the particular case is not suitable for determination by arbitration. In addition, the competent authorities may, on an ad hoc basis, agree that binding arbitration shall be used in respect of any other matter to which Article XXVI applies. If an arbitration proceeding (the "Proceeding") under paragraph 6 of Article XXVI commences, the following rules and procedures shall apply:

1. The Proceeding shall be conducted in the manner prescribed by, and subject to the requirements of, paragraphs 6 and 7 of Article XXVI and these rules and procedures, as modified or supplemented by any other rules and procedures agreed upon by the competent authorities pursuant to paragraph 17 below.

2. The determination reached by an arbitration board in the Proceeding shall be limited to a determination regarding the amount of income, expense or tax reportable to the Contracting States.

3. Notwithstanding the initiation of the Proceeding, the competent authorities may reach a mutual agreement to resolve a case and terminate the Proceeding. Correspondingly, a concerned person may withdraw a request for the competent authorities to engage in the Mutual Agreement Procedure (and thereby terminate the Proceeding) at any time.

4. The requirements of subparagraph 7(d) of Article XXVI shall be met when the competent authorities have each received from each concerned person a notarized statement agreeing that the concerned person and each person acting on the concerned person's behalf, shall not disclose to any other person any information received during the course of the Proceeding from either Contracting State or the arbitration board, other than the determination of the Proceeding. A concerned person that has the legal authority to bind any other concerned person(s) on this matter may do so in a comprehensive notarized statement.

5. Each Contracting State shall have 60 days from the date on which the Proceeding begins to send a written communication to the other Contracting State appointing one member of the arbitration board. Within 60 days of the date on which the second such communication is sent, the two members appointed by the Contracting States shall appoint a third member, who shall serve as chair of the board. If either Contracting State fails to appoint a member, or if the members appointed by the Contracting States fail to agree upon the third member in the manner prescribed by this paragraph, a Contracting State shall ask the highest ranking member of the Secretariat at the Centre for Tax Policy and Administration of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) who is not a citizen of either Contracting State, to appoint the remaining member(s) by written notice to both Contracting States within 60 days of the date of such failure. The competent authorities shall develop a non-exclusive list of individuals with familiarity in international tax matters who may potentially serve as the chair of the board.

6. The arbitration board may adopt any procedures necessary for the conduct of its business, provided that the procedures are not inconsistent with any provision of Article XXVI or this note.

7. Each of the Contracting States shall be permitted to submit, within 60 days of the appointment of the chair of the arbitration board, a proposed resolution describing the proposed disposition of the specific monetary amounts of income, expense or taxation at issue in the case, and a supporting position paper, for consideration by the arbitration board. Copies of the proposed resolution and supporting position paper shall be provided by the board to the other Contracting State on the date on which the later of the submissions is submitted to the board. In the event that only one Contracting State submits a proposed resolution within the allotted time, then that proposed resolution shall be deemed to be the determination of the board in that case and the Proceeding shall be terminated. Each of the Contracting States may, if it so desires, submit a reply submission to the board within 120 days of the appointment of its chair, to address any points raised by the proposed resolution or position paper submitted by the other Contracting State. Additional information may be submitted to the arbitration board only at its request, and copies of the board's request and the Contracting State's response shall be provided to the other Contracting State on the date on which the request or the response is submitted. Except for logistical matters such as those identified in paragraphs 12, 14 and 15 below, all communications from the Contracting States to the arbitration board, and vice versa, shall take place only through written communications between the designated competent authorities and the chair of the board.

8. The arbitration board shall deliver a determination in writing to the Contracting States within six months of the appointment of its chair. The board shall adopt as its determination one of the proposed resolutions submitted by the Contracting States.

9. In making its determination, the arbitration board shall apply, as necessary: (1) the provisions of the Convention as amended; (2) any agreed commentaries or explanations of the Contracting States concerning the Convention as amended; (3) the laws of the Contracting States to the extent they are not inconsistent with each other; and (4) any OECD Commentary, Guidelines or Reports regarding relevant analogous portions of the OECD Model Tax Convention.

10. The determination of the arbitration board in a particular case shall be binding on the Contracting States. The determination of the board shall not state a rationale. It shall have no precedential value.

11. As provided in subparagraph 7(e) of Article XXVI, the determination of an arbitration board shall constitute a resolution by mutual agreement under this Article. Each concerned person must, within 30 days of receiving the determination of the board from the competent authority to which the case was first presented, advise that competent authority whether that concerned person accepts the determination of the board. If any concerned person fails to so advise the relevant competent authority within this time frame, the determination of the board shall be considered not to have been accepted in that case. Where the determination of the board is not accepted, the case may not subsequently be the subject of a Proceeding.

12. Any meeting(s) of the arbitration board shall be in facilities provided by the Contracting State whose competent authority initiated the mutual agreement proceedings in the case.

13. The treatment of any associated interest or penalties shall be determined by applicable domestic law of the Contracting State(s) concerned.

14. No information relating to the Proceeding (including the board's determination) may be disclosed by the members of the arbitration board or their staffs or by either competent authority, except as permitted by the Convention and the domestic laws of the Contracting States. In addition, all material prepared in the course of, or relating to, the Proceeding shall be considered to be information exchanged between the Contracting States. The Contracting States shall ensure that all members of the arbitration board and their staffs sign and send to each Contracting State notarized statements, prior to their acting in the arbitration proceeding, in which they agree to abide by and be subject to the confidentiality and nondisclosure provisions of Articles XXVI and XXVII of the Convention and the applicable domestic laws of the Contracting States. In the event those provisions conflict, the most restrictive condition shall apply.

15. The fees and expenses of members of the arbitration board shall be set in accordance with the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) Schedule of Fees for arbitrators, as in effect on the date on which the arbitration proceedings begin, and shall be borne equally by the Contracting States. Any fees for language translation shall also be borne equally by the Contracting States. Meeting facilities, related resources, financial management, other logistical support, and general administrative coordination of the Proceeding shall be provided, at its own cost, by the Contracting State whose competent authority initiated the mutual agreement proceedings in the case. Any other costs shall be borne by the Contracting State that incurs them.

16. For purposes of paragraphs 6 and 7 of Article XXVI and this note, each competent authority shall confirm in writing to the other competent authority and to the concerned person(s) the date of its receipt of the information necessary to undertake substantive consideration for a mutual agreement. Such information shall be:

a) in the United States, the information required to be submitted to the U.S. competent authority under Revenue Procedure 2006-54, section 4.05 (or any applicable analogous provisions) and, for cases initially submitted as a request for an Advance Pricing Agreement, the information required to be submitted to the Internal Revenue Service under Revenue Procedure 2006-9, section 4 (or any applicable analogous provisions), and

b) in Canada, the information required to be submitted to Canadian competent authority under Information Circular 71-17 (or any applicable successor publication).

However, this information shall not be considered received until both competent authorities have received copies of all materials submitted to either Contracting State by the concerned person(s) in connection with the mutual agreement procedure.

17. The competent authorities of the Contracting States may modify or supplement the above rules and procedures as necessary to more effectively implement the intent of paragraph 6 of Article XXVI to eliminate double taxation.

If the above proposal is acceptable to your Government, I further propose that this Note, which is authentic in English and in French, and your reply Note reflecting such acceptance shall constitute an agreement between our two Governments which shall enter into force on the date of entry into force of the Protocol and shall be annexed to the Convention as Annex A thereto and shall therefore be an integral part of the Convention.

Please accept, Excellency, the assurance of my highest consideration.

I am pleased to inform you that the Government of the United States of America accepts the proposal set forth in your Note. The Government of the United States of America further agrees that your Note, which is authentic in English and in French, together with this reply, shall constitute an Agreement between the United States of America and Canada, which shall enter into force on the date of entry into force of the Protocol amending the Convention between the United States of America and Canada with Respect to Taxes on Income and on Capital done at Washington on 26 September 1980, as amended by the Protocols done on 14 June 1983, 28 March 1984, 17 March 1995, and 29 July 1997 (the "Convention"), and shall be annexed to the Convention as Annex A thereto, and shall therefore be an integral part of the Convention.

Accept, Excellency, the renewed assurances of my highest consideration.