Exemption - principal place of residence; contiguous land
The taxpayer acquired land as a sole proprietor. Neighbouring land was owned by her husband and was used by the taxpayer as her Principal Place of Residence (PPR). The Commissioner assessed land tax on the first mentioned land for 2016-2018. The taxpayer argued the ‘contiguous land’ exemption in s54(3) of the Land Tax Act applied.
On 13 December 2019, the Tribunal decided in favour of the Commissioner and agreed with the Commissioner that the taxpayer was neither the ‘owner’ of the adjoining land nor did she have any equitable interest because of any resulting or constructive trust. The former land was vacant and it did not physically enhance the adjoining land. Even if the taxpayer was able to establish such a trust, unless there was an order of a court or tribunal making a finding of a trust, the ownership requirements of the PPR exemption could not be satisfied.