Royal Bank Trust Company (Trinidad) Ltd v The Board of Inland Revenue

JurisdictionTrinidad & Tobago
JudgeKoylass, C.,Burke, M.,Julumsingh, M.
Judgment Date30 July 1982
CourtTax Appeal Board (Trinidad and Tobago)
Docket NumberE 1 of 90
Date30 July 1982

Tax Appeal Board

Koylass, C.; Burke, M.; Julumsingh, M.

E 1 of 90

Royal Bank Trust Company (Trinidad) Ltd
The Board of Inland Revenue

Timothy Hamel-Smith for appellant

B. Roopnarine and Miss S. Collymore for respondent

Revenue Law - Appeal vs. assessment to death duties — Estates and Succession Duties Act, s. 21(1) — Whether sum allegedly owed by testator to his widow should have been allowed as a debt — No evidence that the arrangement between the husband and wife had been intended to have legal consequences so as to impose an obligation to pay sum $137,500 — Assessment upheld.


Paragraph 6 of the petition reads –

“By his assessment the Commissioner of Estate Duty has refused to allow as a debt they said sum of $137,500.00 owed by the Testator to the Widow on the ground that by the share Transfer the Widow acknowledged the receipt thereof and has treated the full balances in the said joint accounts as assessable for estate duty purposes.”


At the hearing, the only matter on which the Court was called upon to adjudicate was the question of the debt of $137,500 as solicitor for the appellant conceded regarding the balances in the joint account.


In annex “B” to the petition, the statement of the grounds of appeal set out the following–

  • “1. By a Share Transfer dated on the 30th of January, 1976 Ida Madeline Grant (hereinafter called “the widow”) transferred to George Copeland Grant (hereinafter called the deceased”) 50,000.00 Stock Units of $1.00 each in the capital of T. Geddes Grant Limited in consideration of the sum of $137,500.00 expressed to have been paid by the deceased to the widow.

  • 2. Notwithstanding the recital contained in the said Share Transfer to the effect that the consideration was paid in truth and in fact neither the sum of $137,500.00 nor any part thereof was paid to the widow and the deceased at the date of his death was still indebted to her in that sum.

  • 3. The purpose of the transfer of the said stock units to the deceased was to enable him to borrow money a considerable part of which was to be expended for medical attention.

  • 4. In the premises the decision of the Board of Inland Revenue to disallow the widow's claim against the estate in respect of this debt is arbitrary and cannot be supported in fact or in law in that the Board failed and/or refused to accept evidence of the non-pappent of the debt and treated the receipt embodied in the Share Transfer as conclusive between the parties which it is not and/or exercised its discretion wrongly...

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