Dolores Romanuk v. Her Majesty the Queen

(Federal) (Civil) (By Leave)


Canadian charter - civil - Constitutional law, Taxation.


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Canadian Charter of Rights ? Constitutional law ? Taxation ? Appeal of income tax reassessments ? Civil procedure ? Motion to amend Notice of Appeal ? Whether s. 24 of Charter applies to exclude evidence in a civil proceeding before Tax Court of Canada, where such evidence was allegedly obtained in contravention of s. 7 and/or s. 8 of Charter.

The applicant, Dolores Romanuk was reassessed in relation to her 1995, 1996, and 1997 taxation years denying her claim for losses allocated to her by the Softcom Solutions Partnership (SPP). Penalties were also assessed under the Income Tax Act, R.S.C. 1985, c.1 (5th Supp.)

The applicant filed a Notice of Appeal of the reassessments in the Tax Court in 2008. In 2009, an Amended Notice of Appeal was filed. In 2011, the applicant filed a motion for leave to further amend her Notice of Appeal. As part of the proposed amendments to her Notice of Appeal, the applicant sought to add additional alleged facts in relation to:

(a) the communications between the auditor for the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) and SPP;

(b) various meetings that the CRA auditor had with certain partners; and

(c) the communications and interactions between the auditor for the CRA and Special Investigations section of the CRA.

The applicant alleged that the CRA used its audit powers as provided in s. 231.1 of the Act to require SPP to provide information after the CRA had commenced an investigation for the purpose of determining whether one or more persons should be charged with an offence under s. 239 of the Act. The applicant argued that the use of these audit powers by the CRA in this case violated her rights under ss. 7 and 8 of the Charter. She sought the exclusion of evidence or the allowance of her appeal. The Tax Court of Canada dismissed the applicant’s motion for leave to file a second amended Notice of Appeal. The Federal Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal.