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Mineral Rights

The Mineral Rights Unit, Lands and Mineral Tenure Branch, Ministry of Energy and Resources, 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

April 27, 2022: Update to the letter sent to Mineral Rights Tax taxpayers, dated April 11, 2022

The Ministry of Energy and Resources recognizes that some Mineral Rights Tax clients have been unable to register in the online ‘Integrated Resource Information System (IRIS)’. As a result, the Ministry of Energy and Resources will now provide the option of receiving a paper version of the Mineral Rights Tax invoice per regular mail.

Going forward, this measure of accommodation is subject to review. The ministry encourages all taxpayers who are able to register with an account in IRIS to proceed, even though the deadline of April 25, 2022, as set out in the letter has passed. All registered users of IRIS can enjoy the convenience and benefits available to taxpayers under this online system.

February 7, 2022: MRT in IRIS

The new Mineral Rights Tax in Integrated Resource Information System (MRT in IRIS) initiative will be operational on February 14, 2022. Once the system is operational, MRT in IRIS will be accessible online allowing all MRT clients to apply for exemptions or view and download their MRT invoice from any internet location.

You or your corporation will need both a Security Administrator (SA) account and an IRIS user account to access invoices and other MRT features in IRIS. If you have not already done so, please request your SA account now. It will be up to the persons named as Security Administrators to set up individual IRIS user accounts as necessary for the corporation or individual. The Application for IRIS Security Administrator Account and the Security Administrator Role and Responsibilities Information Circular are available on Saskatchewan.ca.

MRT invoices will be available in IRIS starting with the 2022 taxation year and will not be mailed. The annual MRT invoices will be available in IRIS no later than June 1, 2022.

If you are a freehold mineral owner, you are encouraged to verify that your mineral titles have been properly linked to your Business Associate (BA) account. Once MRT in IRIS is operational, the MRT Mineral Title Report accessible under the new MRT menu item, provides a list of all mineral titles linked to your BA and will be useful in the verification process. The report is available with the I.INF.MineralRightsTax.View permission set.

Any MRT client who has not set up an SA account and subsequent IRIS user accounts will not receive an invoice and late payment fees will be assessed. A Statement will be mailed monthly detailing the outstanding taxes and late payment fees.

More information is available in Section 6. Mineral Rights Tax and Exemptions.

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 Application 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.

UPDATED January 26, 2022: MRT invoices will NOT be mailed for the 2022 taxation year or future taxation years. There are several benefits to going to IRIS for your invoices:

  • 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 being 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 Information Services Corporation (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.

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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

MRT is assessed annually on freehold mineral titles in Saskatchewan, in keeping with The Mineral Taxation Act, 1983, whether or not the minerals are in production. To calculate MRT, mineral title data from ISC data is received and processed by IRIS. IRIS is used for many purposes within ER.

MRT in IRIS, a new electronic administration system, is used to assess MRT and process Agricultural and Trust Corporation Exemption Applications starting with the 2022 taxation year. The new online features and services mean that MRT clients will be required to use IRIS to view invoices and submit exemption applications.

To access MRT in IRIS, you or your corporation will need to have a Security Administrator (SA) account for IRIS and a Business Associate Identification (BA ID). If you are already a MRT client, you will have a BA ID. Your BA ID is a five-digit account number printed on most MRT documents. If you do not already have an SA account, please visit the Saskatchewan.ca/iris and follow the instructions in the “How To” section. Once the SA account is complete, the SA can set up individual user accounts for you or users in your corporation. MRT user permissions are listed below. Permissions 2 to 5 are only required if your corporation intends to submit a Trust Corporation Exemption Application (permissions 2 and 3) or an Agricultural Corporation Exemption Application (permissions 4 and 5).

  1. General: MRT I.INF.MineralRightsTax.View
  2. Trust Corporations: I.INF.MRTTrustCorpExemptionApplications.Administrator
  3. Trust Corporations: I.INF.MRTTrustCorpExemptionApplications.Applicant
  4. Agricultural Corporations: I.INF.MRTAgCorpExemptionApplications.Administrator
  5. Agricultural Corporations: I.INF.MRTAgCorpExemptionApplications.Applicant

User Learning Centre modules are now publicly available for MRT in IRIS. They provide training and insight into how to use the MRT in IRIS features. The modules can be accessed at the User learning Centre main page. The web links of interest are:

Mineral Rights Tax Appeal Process

Taxpayers are encouraged to resolve discrepancies they may find on their invoice with the Ministry of Energy and Resources as a first step. In case a resolution is not satisfactory to the taxpayer, the Mineral Rights Tax assessments may be appealed within 90 days after the date on which the notice of assessment is mailed as per section 6 of the Regulations, provided the tax has been paid in full. The taxpayer must file an appeal with the Board of Revenue Commissioners at 306-787-6221 or by email at info@smb.gov.sk.ca within the prescribed period or the right to appeal will be forfeited.

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.
For more information 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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