About the ARB
The Assessment Review Board (ARB or Board) is an independent adjudicative tribunal established under the Assessment Review Board Act, which has the jurisdiction to hear appeals under the Assessment Act and municipal legislation (the Municipal Act and the City of Toronto Act). In general, the Board hears appeals respecting property assessment, classification and some aspects of municipal taxation.
The provincial government, through the Ministry of Finance, sets the laws regarding property assessment. Municipalities are responsible for setting tax rates and collecting property taxes. The Municipal Property Assessment Corporation (MPAC) assesses and classifies all properties in Ontario. Property owners receive their Notices of Assessment from MPAC, and tax bills are issued through your Municipalities. If there is a dispute between a property owner and MPAC, the property owner can file an appeal with the ARB.
History of ARB
Property assessments have been conducted in what is now Ontario since 1793. In 1970, the province assumed the role of assessing property from municipalities and replaced the Courts of Revision with the Assessment Review Court (ARC). ARC was renamed the Assessment Review Board in 1983.
With the enactment of the Fair Municipal Finance Act, the ARB became the province's sole adjudicative tribunal for property assessment appeals. The legislation reduced duplication and ensured that the ARB was the final tribunal of appeal for such appeals. Prior to 1998, ARB decisions could be appealed to the Ontario Municipal Board (OMB). In 1998, an amendment to the Assessment Review Board Act gave the ARB the capacity to dismiss frivolous appeals.
Decisions by the ARB are final and binding, subject only to appeal to Divisional Court on questions of law when the Court grants leave to appeal. The ARB also exercises the power to review its decisions.
Beginning with the 2009 tax year, changes to the Assessment Act require owners of residential, farm and conservation lands, and managed forests to file a request for reconsideration with MPAC, and/or the Program Administrator (for farm, managed forest or conservation land), before they may file an appeal with the ARB.
The ARB's jurisdiction and its authority are defined by the Assessment Review Board Act, the Assessment Act, the Municipal Act, the City of Toronto Act, the Provincial Land Tax Act, the Education Act and the Statutory Powers Procedure Act.