Vault Energy Trust

Vault Energy Trust

March 21, 2007 14:08 ET

Vault Energy Announces 2006 U.S. Income Tax Reporting Information

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(CCNMatthews - March 21, 2007) - Vault Energy Trust (TSX:VNG.UN) ("Vault") provides the following U.S. Income Tax Information to assist U.S. individual unitholders of Vault Energy Trust ("Vault") in reporting distributions received from Vault during 2006 on their Internal Revenue Service ("IRS") Form 1040, "U.S. Individual Income Tax Return" ("Form 1040").

This summary is of a general nature only and is not intended to be legal or tax advice to any particular holder or potential holder of Vault trust units. Holders or potential holders of Vault trust units should consult their own legal and tax advisors as to their particular tax consequences of holding Vault trust units.

Qualified Dividends

In consultation with its U.S. tax advisors, Vault believes that its trust units should be properly classified as equity in a corporation, rather than debt, and that dividends paid to individual U.S. unitholders should be "qualified dividends" for U.S. federal income tax purposes. As such, the portion of the distributions made during 2006 that are considered dividends for U.S. federal income tax purposes should qualify for the reduced rate of tax applicable to long-term capital gains. However, the individual taxpayer's situation must be considered before making this determination.

Vault has not received an IRS letter ruling or a tax opinion from its tax advisors on these matters.

Trust Units Held Outside a Qualified Retirement Plan

With respect to cash distributions paid during the year to U.S. individual unitholders, 69.22 percent should be reported as a return of capital (to the extent of the unitholder's U.S. tax basis in their respective units) and 30.78 percent should be reported as "qualified dividends".

The portion of the distributions treated as "qualified dividends" should be reported on Line 9b of Form 1040, unless the fact situation of the U.S. individual unitholders determines otherwise. Commentary on page 23 of the Form 1040 Instruction Booklet for 2006 with respect to "qualified dividends" provides examples of individual situations where the dividends would not be "qualified dividends". Where, due to individual situations, the dividends are not "qualified dividends", the amount should be reported on Schedule B - Part II - Ordinary Dividends and Line 9a of Form 1040.

For U.S. federal income tax purposes, in reporting a return of capital with respect to distributions received, U.S. unitholders are required to reduce the cost base of their trust units by the total amount of distributions received that represent a return of capital. This amount is non-taxable if it is a return of cost base in the trust units. A return of capital for U.S. tax purposes is calculated differently than for Canadian tax purposes. For U.S. tax purposes, a return of capital occurs only after all the current and accumulated earnings and profits of a corporation have been distributed. If the full amount of the cost base has been recovered, any further return of capital distributions should be reported as capital gains.

U.S. unitholders are encouraged to utilize the Qualified Dividends and Capital Gain Tax Worksheet of Form 1040 to determine the amount of tax that may be otherwise applicable.

The taxable portion (for Canadian income tax purposes) of the distributions is subject to a minimum 15% Canadian withholding tax that is withheld prior to any payments being distributed to unitholders. Beginning in 2005, the return of capital portion (for Canadian income tax purposes) of the distributions is also subject to a 15% withholding tax that is withheld prior to any payments being distributed to unitholders. Where trust units are held in a cash account, we believe the full amount of all withholding tax is likely to be creditable, subject to numerous limitations, for U.S. tax purposes in the year in which the withholding taxes are withheld. Where trust units are held in a qualified retirement account, the same withholding taxes apply but the amount is not creditable for U.S. tax purposes.

Investors should report their dividend income and capital gain (if any), and make adjustments to their tax basis in Vault's units, in accordance with this information and subject to advice from their tax advisors. U.S. individual unitholders who hold their Vault trust units through a stockbroker or other intermediary should receive tax reporting information from their stockbroker or other intermediary. We expect that the stockbroker or other intermediary will issue a Form 1099-DIV, "Dividends and Distributions" or a substitute form developed by the stockbroker or other intermediary. Vault is not required to furnish such unitholders with Form 1099-DIV. Information on the Forms 1099-DIV issued by the brokers or other intermediaries may not accurately reflect the information in this press release for a variety of reasons. Investors should consult their brokers and tax advisors to ensure that the information presented here is accurately reflected on their tax returns. Brokers and/or intermediaries may or may not be required to issue amended Forms 1099-DIV.

Trust Units Held Within a Qualified Retirement Plan

No amounts are required to be reported on a Form 1040 where Vault trust units are held within a qualified retirement plan.

Vault Energy Trust is a conventional oil and gas income trust. Vault units are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) under the symbol "VNG.UN". Convertible debentures of Vault trade on the TSX under the symbols"VNG.DB", and "VNG.DB.A".

Contact Information

  • Vault Energy Trust
    Robert Jepson
    President and Chief Executive Officer
    (403) 444-9662
    Vault Energy Trust
    Greg Fisher
    VP, Finance and Chief Financial Officer
    (403) 444-9651
    Vault Energy Trust
    Nicole Collard
    Investor Relations
    (403) 444-9657