Megan Seto
Megan Seto, Lawyer, McInnes Cooper

The Supreme Court of Canada recently decided that a person against whom a penalty is imposed in proceedings under Canada’s Income Tax Act doesn’t get the protection of the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms’ guarantees of the presumption of innocence, proof of guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, and right to a fair and public hearing.

The decision targets tax shelter schemes and the level of protection afforded those who administer tax arrangements, and confirms that tax preparers and planners, and likely donors too, are on their own when it comes to civil penalties imposed under the Income Tax Act. To learn how the decision impacts tax preparers, planners, and donors, and could affect penalties under other administrative regulatory schemes, read McInnes Cooper’s Legal Alert: On Their Own – SCC Confirms Penalized Tax Preparers & Planners Don’t Get Charter Protection in Income Tax Act Proceedings. You can read more of McInnes Cooper’s Legal Publications at

McInnes Cooper prepared this article for information; it is not legal advice.  Consult McInnes Cooper before acting on it. McInnes Cooper excludes all liability for anything contained in or any use of this article. © McInnes Cooper, 2015.  All rights reserved.

About the author:

Megan Seto is a tax and cross-border lawyer. She works with taxpayers in a variety of matters involving the Canada Revenue Agency, including non-resident tax issues (such as withholding tax), negotiating and responding to tax audits, preparing objections and settlement, and litigation and dispute resolution. Megan also provides advice specific to cross-border mergers and acquisitions, international treaties, import/export laws, and international tax and tax planning. You can reach Megan at