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Mineral Rights

The Mineral Rights Unit, Lands and Mineral Tenure Branch, Ministry of Energy and Resources (ER), administers the Mineral Rights Tax, Indigenous Mineral Land Claims, Mineral Trust Certificates, Builders’ Liens associated with Government of Saskatchewan mineral dispositions, Working Interest Owner Exemptions, and the establishment and maintenance of Crown Mineral Reserves.

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1. What's New

December 16, 2021: MRT in IRIS

Issues associated with the Security Administrator (SA) application forms have now been resolved. If you have not already done so, please complete the IRIS SA Account Form and return to us using the e-mail link provided in the form.

The SA is responsible for managing user accounts and assigning access and permissions for IRIS users for the applicable Business Associate (BA) or parties delegated to act on behalf of the BA. To find out more, please read the Security Administrator Role and Responsibilities Information Circular.

Please note that access to MRT in IRIS will not be available until the system goes live which is expected in mid-February 2022. At that time, the SAs will be able to set up the user accounts which will allow users to check if their mineral titles are properly identified and submit Agricultural or Trust Corporation exemption applications.

MRT invoices will continue to be mailed for the 2022 taxation year, however, it is recommended that you become familiar with how to access the invoices through IRIS. There are several benefits to going to IRIS for your invoices:

  • Invoices will eventually only be available through IRIS;
  • IRIS provides more detailed information associated with each title being invoiced; and
  • Title data in IRIS is downloadable, making it easier to reconcile against corporate records.

Training modules are currently be developed to assist with completing Agricultural and Trust Corporation application. More information will be available on training when it is available.

Trust Corporations: You were previously advised that knowing the ISC client number of any trust beneficiaries would be useful in the new system. Please be advised that MRT in IRIS will NOT provide the opportunity of selecting an ISC client number.

November 2021: MRT in IRIS

MRT in IRIS is well underway. Development is underway and things are looking good for the release in early 2022.

Letters were recently mailed to Agricultural Corporations with existing Agricultural Corporation Exemptions and to all Trust Corporations licensed under The Trust and Loan Corporations Act, 1997. Both letters are to let corporations know that the process for obtaining Mineral Rights Tax exemption is changing:

  • All applications must be submitted through IRIS after the system is operational in early 2022.
  • To apply for an exemption in IRIS, you must have an IRIS user account. To get an IRIS user account, someone from the corporation must first apply for, and receive, an IRIS Security Administrator (SA) Account. To apply for an SA Account, please follow the How To instructions on the IRIS website.

The Agricultural Corporation letter (link below) was only sent to corporations who have an existing exemption. If you think your corporation qualifies for an Agricultural Corporation Exemption, please review The Mineral Taxation Act, and its related items. Links to these documents are provided in the Acts and Regulations Changes section.

The Trust Corporation letter (link below) was sent to all Trust Corporations licensed under The Trust and Loan Corporation Act, 1997 in an effort to reach all Trust Corporations who could hold mineral titles in Saskatchewan on behalf of individuals. The information in the letter is not applicable if your Trust Corporation does not hold these mineral titles.

The MRT Question and Answer document has been updated with information related to the MRT in IRIS initiative. The questions have been grouped into General, Agricultural Corporation and Trust Corporation sections.

Additional Information

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2. Acts and Regulation Changes

Acts and Regulations governing the Mineral Rights Tax

The Mineral Taxation (Modernization) Amendment Act, 2020 received Royal assent in July 2020, and will be proclaimed into force when The Mineral Right Tax Regulations, 2021 are approved. Once approved, The Mineral Taxation Act, 1983 will continue to provide the authority to assess property taxes on freehold mineral owners (mineral rights tax), and will include all administrative modernizations.

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3. Builders’ Liens associated with Government of Saskatchewan dispositions

The Builders' Lien Act gives members of the construction industry the right to claim and register a Builders' lien. The lien secures payment for the work or services performed or materials supplied.

A Builders' lien registered against a mineral right is an instrument that provides the claimant with a recognized interest if the disposition is transferred or in the event of bankruptcy. The process to register a lien involving Crown minerals must be completed through ER. The process to register a lien against freehold minerals must be completed through ISC.

Builders' liens can only be registered against Crown minerals if a provincial Crown mineral disposition (provincial disposition) has been issued. A provincial disposition authorizes the Disposition Holder to explore for or develop Crown mineral rights such as oil, natural gas, potash, uranium, coal, etc. and is issued in the form of a lease, license, permit or claim. A lien does not affect the terms of the provincial disposition and the Disposition Holder can continue to operate as usual.

See the Publications Centre to access The Builders' Lien Act and Regulations.

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4. Crown Mineral Reserves

Crown mineral reserves cover areas in which Crown minerals are not available for dispositions, such as oil and gas leases, potash leases or metallic mineral claims.

Crown mineral reserves may be established to prevent conflicts in mineral resource development and to minimize possible interference between mineral disposition activity and future land use.

Read the Crown Mineral Reserve Notices – Withdrawals and Re-openings for a list of areas of Crown minerals or Crown mineral lands that have been withdrawn from or re-opened to mineral dispositioning.

Due to the extremely large size of Crown reserves, a single map is not provided. Please refer to the Mining and Petroleum GeoAtlas for the location of Crown mineral reserves.

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5. Indigenous Mineral Land Claims

Information Coming Soon!

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6. Mineral Rights Tax and Exemptions

Mineral Rights Tax Payment Options

For your ease, convenience, and to minimize foreign currency exchange discrepancies, payments for Mineral Rights Tax can be made using one of the following electronic methods:

  1. Credit Card (MasterCard or Visa):
    To arrange payment by credit card, please contact the ER Service Desk.

  2. Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT):
    To make a wire transfer, please contact the ER Service Desk and ask for an "EFT Application Form" to obtain the banking details.

  3. Online Banking:
    To make a payment through your bank's website or mobile application, please add "SK ENERGY & RESOURCES Min Right Tax" as a new payee. Your Business Associate (BA) ID, located on your invoice, is the account number. Visit your bank's website for instructions on how to add a new payee.
Contact the ER Service Desk at ER.Servicedesk@gov.sk.ca or 1-855-219-9373.
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7. Mineral Trust Certificates

The Government of Saskatchewan is the trustee for a number of Mineral Trust Certificates (MTC). Some of the MTCs are Beneficial Interest Trust Certificates that were issued by land companies in the late 1940s and early 1950s in exchange for the controlling rights to certain freehold lands. These trust certificates entitled the owner to a fractional, beneficial share in any profit produced from the mineral lands. In 1962, some holders exchanged their Beneficial Interest Trust Certificate for a Gross Royalty Trust Certificate. Gross Royalty Trust Certificates provide for a percentage of production royalties. The Government of Saskatchewan currently administers both Beneficial Interest and Gross Royalty Trust Certificates.

The majority of issued MTCs are either:

  1. one-fifth (1/5th) beneficial interest in all mines and minerals;
  2. one-fourth (1/4th) beneficial interest in oil and gas and a 100 per cent interest in all other mines and minerals; or
  3. 3.5 or 4 per cent gross royalty of the production of petroleum, natural gas and related hydrocarbons and may include a percentage gross royalty or beneficial interest on other minerals.
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8. Working Interest Owner Exemption

Information Coming Soon!

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