Tax Bulletin - U.S. Estate Tax Issues for Canadians

March 2016

Death and taxes ― two sure things in life. Did you know that even if you’re resident in Canada when you die, if you own U.S. property ― perhaps a vacation home in Florida, a ski chalet in Idaho or U.S. securities ― you may be subject to U.S. estate tax?

U.S. estate tax arises on the death of an individual and is applied at graduated rates to the fair market value of the individual’s taxable estate. The same rates apply whether the individual is a U.S. citizen, a U.S. resident, or a non-resident of the U.S.― the difference is that for non-residents, only the value of property with a U.S. location or connection is included in calculating the taxable estate that is subject to the tax.

In this bulletin, we’ll consider some of the U.S. estate tax issues that Canadian residents (who are not U.S. citizens) should keep in mind if they own (or are considering buying) U.S. property. All figures in this bulletin are expressed in U.S. dollars.

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