Tax information

Here are the answers to some frequently asked questions we receive about tax and tax information.

Sun Life Financial or its transfer agents do not provide advice on tax-related matters. The following information is for general guidance only. You should consult with a tax advisor or the appropriate government agency for advice on your specific situation.

What withholding taxes are deducted from my common share dividend payment?
What is the U.S. Internal Revenue Service backup withholding tax?
How do I report dividends as a United States resident?
How do I contact a government tax agency online?

 
What withholding taxes are deducted from my common share dividend payment?
No withholding tax is deducted for residents of Canada.

It is a requirement of the Government of Canada to deduct a non-resident withholding tax from dividends paid to shareholders who reside outside of Canada. This tax is deducted from the gross amount of your dividend payment.

  • United States, United Kingdom and Philippines residents: 15%
  • Hong Kong and Bermuda residents: 25%
  • Residents of other countries: 25% unless this amount is reduced by a tax treaty between Canada and the country where you reside. 

 
What is the U.S. Internal Revenue Service backup withholding tax?
If our transfer agent does not have your Tax Identification Number (TIN) on file you are subject to a U.S. Internal Revenue Service (IRS) backup withholding tax based on the following rates:
 

Dividend payment date Withholding tax rate
December 2000 0%
March & June, 2001 31%
 
September & December, 2001 30.5%
 
June 2002 to June 2003 30%
 
Current rate
(as of September 2003 dividend)
 
28%

 

Download and complete a copy of the W9 TIN form. Submit the form to our transfer agent in your country of residence so your future dividends will not be subject to this withholding tax.

 
How do I report dividends as a United States resident?
Sun Life Financial Inc. is a “qualified foreign corporation” under the Jobs for Growth Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2003 by virtue of the fact that its common shares are “readily tradable on an established securities market in the United States”.
Therefore, 100% of the dividends paid to U.S. individuals should be eligible for Box 1b on IRS form 1099-DIV.

 
How do I contact a government tax agency online?

Canada:
Canada Revenue Agency
www.cra-arc.gc.ca

United States:
Internal Revenue Service
www.irs.gov

United Kingdom:
Inland Revenue
www.hmrc.gov.uk

Hong Kong:
Inland Revenue Department
www.gov.hk

Philippines:
Bureau of Internal Revenue
www.bir.gov.ph