Amount:

No Fixed Amount

Type of Program:

Tax Credit


Description:

The Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit is a refundable tax credit based on the qualifying labor expenditures incurred by a qualifying production company for eligible Ontario productions. 

Comments on Funding:

The amount of credit depends on whether the eligible production is a first-time production, a small first-time production, or other than a first-time production. Funding is 35% of the eligible Ontario labor expenditures for other than first-time productions. An additional 10% of labour expenditures if the production is a regional Ontario production.

For first-time producers there is an enhanced tax credit of 40% on the first $240,000 of qualifying labor expenditure to a maximum of $12,000 and 35% on the balance.

There is a 10% regional bonus on all Ontario labor expenditures incurred for the production for:

  • productions that are shot in Ontario entirely outside of the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), or that have at least five location days in Ontario (or in the case of a television series, the number of location days is at least equal to the number of episodes), and at least 85% of the location days in Ontario are outside the GTA,
  • wholly animated productions which create at least 85% of key animation in Ontario outside of the GTA qualify for the regional bonus.

When It Ends:

Ongoing

Deadline:

Rolling deadline

Eligibility:

The applicant must:

  • be a qualifying production company
  • be primarily engaged in the carrying on of a Canadian film or video production business through a permanent establishment in Canada in the tax year,
  • not be exempt from tax under Part III of the Taxation Act, 2007 (Ontario) or Part I of the federal Income Tax Act for the tax year
  • not be controlled, at any time in the tax year, directly or indirectly, in any way, by one or more persons, all or part of whose taxable income was exempt from tax under Part I of the federal Income Tax Act,
  • not be a prescribed labour-sponsored venture capital corporation at any time in the tax year)
  • Be a Canadian corporation which is Canadian-controlled, has a permanent establishment in Ontario, and files an Ontario corporate tax return
  • The individual producer of the production must have been an Ontario resident for tax purposes at the end of both of the two calendar years prior to commencement of principal photography.

Applicants cannot claim the Ontario film and television tax credit if they claim the Ontario production services tax credit for that same production for any tax year.

Applications Steps:

The applicant must: 

1

apply via the Online Application Portal (OAP) to Ontario Creates for a certificate of eligibility (COE) at any time during the production (from the start of principal photography or key animation) or after production activities have been completed,

2

pay the administration fee to Ontario Creates by Interac e-Transfer at the time the OFTTC application is submitted,

3

apply for a Letter of Confirmation (LOC), with all the required supporting documentation, confirming that the eligibility criteria were satisfied, if he applied for a Certificate of Eligibility before the production was completed. If the applicant previously submitted a COE application, must use the Letter of Confirmation application link in his production account on the Online Application Portal (OAP). Do not create a new COE application or a combined COE and LOC application, as the application will not be valid.

4

file the certificate of eligibility (COE) and a completed Schedule 556, Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit together with the tax return to Canada Revenue Agency in order to claim the Ontario Film & Television tax credit.

Fees:

  1. 1
    The administration fee is calculated as 0.15% of the estimate of total paid Ontario labour expenditures for the application. The minimum total administration fee is $500 and the maximum total administration fee is $10,000 per application. Please note that the administration fee is based on the Ontario side of the production budget in the case of co-productions.
  2. 2
    There is an additional filing fee of $100 applied to applications for Certificates of Eligibility received more than 24 months after the end of the first taxation year in which principal photography began. Where a year-end has not been included in the application, the additional fee will be applied to applications submitted more than 24 months after the start of principal photography.
  3. 3
    There is a separate fee of $100 for each Amended Certificate.

Documentation Needed:

The applicant must: 

  • the certificate of eligibility issued by Ontario Creates;
  • the completed Schedule 556, Ontario Film and Television Tax Credit;
  • their T2 Corporation Income Tax Return for the year.

Required documents:

  1. 1
    BOTH:
  • The completed OFTTC Application
  • the completed Canadian Film or Video Production Tax Credit Application (the application as submitted to CAVCO, as confirmed by the "submission date" on the front page of the application).
  1. 2
    Ontario Creates Applicant Declaration completed and signed by an authorized signing officer (officer and/or director) of the corporation.
  2. 3
    Administration Fee payable by Interac e-transfer to Ontario Creates
  3. 4
    Ontario Creates Waiver Declaration & Statement of Intent to Claim COVID-19 Extensions signed by an authorized signing officer (officer and/or director) of the corporation.
  4. 5
    Certificate and Articles of Incorporation for the applicant production company and any corporate owners and for the co-production partner in case of inter-provincial co-productions.
  5. 6
    Completed and signed Corporate Schedule for the applicant company and co-production partners (if inter-provincial co-productions) with all the information requested on the form (include information on any corporate shareholders).
  6. 7
    Signed Producer Residency Declaration forms for all controlling producers (producers, executive producers and co-producers).
  7. 8
    Agreements for all other Related Canadian Producers (not required for line producers and associate producers) outlining their duties and responsibilities on the production.
  8. 9
    CAVCO Part A Certificate (if available at this stage) OR written confirmation from CAVCO that they are aware of the courtesy credit exemption request for the individual(s) in question if the CAVCO Part A Certificate is not available and there are non-Canadian producer(s)/producer-related personnel which are not identified in the application
  9. 10
    CAVCO Personnel Numbers for all producers, producer-related personnel (including production manager) and key creative personnel.
  10. 11
    Chain of Title Documentation - including any legal opinion, option/acquisition agreements, assignment agreements or writer’s agreement(s), if applicable (for a series, a sample writer’s agreement). Chain of title documentation is not required for international treaty co-productions.
  11. 12
    Signed and dated inter-provincial co-production agreement and any amending agreement(s) for Inter-provincial Co-productions, if applicable.
  12. 13
    International Treaty Co-productions:

Signed and dated international co-production agreement and any amending agreement(s), if applicable.

AND Telefilm Canada’s Preliminary Recommendation. If the production is completed: Telefilm Canada’s Final Recommendation and CAVCO Part B Certificate of Completion.

  1. 14
    Synopsis – which provides a brief description of the storyline.
  2. 15
    Episodic Canadian content point breakdown (for series only) – listing the individual’s name, position and total points per episode. This information is entered directly in the online application.
  3. 16
    If production is completed, final on camera credit list (head and tail credits – per episode for series).
  4. 17
    Production Schedule including start and end dates of pre-production, shooting days (including location of shooting) and post-production.
  5. 18
    If applying for the Regional Bonus, provide a summary of all shooting/animation days with dates and locations, and supporting documentation such as daily production reports for all shooting days or agreement with the animation facility.
  1. 19
    Cast and Crew Lists, including role and residency addresses.
  2. 20
    Locked production budget in Telefilm (or similar) format.

International treaty co-productions: Submit breakdown of budgeted costs between the co-production partners.

Inter-provincial co-productions: Submit co-production partner’s budget. 

If production is completed:

Final Cost Report: Must be the detailed final production cost report (on which the audited statement is based, if applicable).

International treaty co-productions: Submit breakdown of final costs between the co-production partners.

Inter-provincial co-productions: Submit co-production partner’s final cost report.

  1. 21
    Audited Statement of production costs, as per CAVCO’s audit guidelines for productions with a final cost of $500,000 or more.
  2. 22
    Schedule of Ontario labour costs (using the Calculation of Eligible Labour and Other Expenditures spreadsheet is recommended). Applicants must submit:
  • projected amounts based on the locked production budget, if the production is not complete.
  • final amounts based on the final cost report (on which the audited statement if applicable), if the production is complete.
  1. 23
    Schedule of non-Ontario costs (using the Calculation of Eligible Labour and Other Expenditures spreadsheet is recommended) 
  • If production is not complete: Please submit projected amounts based on the locked production budget.
  • If production is complete: Please submit final amounts based on the final cost report (on which the audited statement is based, if applicable).
  1. 24
    Financing and exploitation agreements: Provide signed agreements for all sources of financing and any distribution or broadcast license agreements. If only Deal Memos are available, please submit the executed Long Form Agreements once they are available.
  2. 25
    Financing Plan - This information is entered directly in the online application.
  3. 26
    Agreement with a CRTC-licensed broadcaster which guarantees that the Production will be shown in Ontario between 7pm and 11pm (not required if it’s for children) within two years of completion. In some cases proof of broadcast may be requested, such as written confirmation from the broadcaster of the date and time that the production aired, or other proof that broadcast has occurred. OR

Agreement with an Ontario-based Canadian distributor that the Production will be released in Ontario within two years of completion. In some cases proof of exhibition may be requested, such as written confirmation from the distributor of the date that the production was exhibited, or other proof of exhibition. If you are seeking the COVID extension, the agreement must include a guarantee that the production will be shown in Ontario within four years of completion.

  1. 27
    First-Time Productions - If you are applying for the bonus, please submit:
  • Curriculum vitae/filmography (listing productions with production year, job title and screen credit) for all producers; and
  • First Time Producer Declaration signed by all producers.
  1. 28
    Copy of the completed production in digital format (either in a playable file format or a downloadable link), if available. A copy of the production is required with the Letter of Confirmation application. For television series, please submit the last episode only. The upload size limit is 35MB on the OAP. If larger, please submit a file sharing link.

About the author 

Maurice

Maurice (Moe) Muise learned the ins-and-outs of government while an employee of the Government of Canada in Ottawa for 10 years. His current focus is helping small businesses in Ontario to identify and maximize government grants to grow their business.
Click here to learn more about Moe's background and how he can help your business.

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