Audit


November 14th, 2012

Back in the old days, if you were selected for a business audit, you’d typically get audited for both income tax and GST/HST (assuming you were a registrant, of course.) ¬†The word is that this is changing – now, you’ll either get audited for one or the either. ¬†Naturally, I would fully expect the auditor to do a cursory review of whichever one is not being audited.

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GST / HST Place of Supply Rules


November 3rd, 2012

Over the last couple of years, the Place of Supply rules for GST/HST have been evolving.  What was relatively easy several years ago, is less so now.

The Place of Supply rules govern what rate of GST/HST to charge, when doing business between provinces.  If you are a business owner in Canada, you absolutely need to become familiar with these rules.

I’m going to post a couple of useful links here.

1.   Tax Tips has a fairly brief description of these rules (note that this link deals with Services)

2.   The Canada Revenue Agency has a very extensive (137 page!) bulletin, the B103.  It has a ton of examples, as well as a couple of flow charts at the back.   Everyone loves a good flow chart.

The G/HST rates across Canada vary widely.  An error or a series or errors could prove costly, so take a few minutes to brush up on these rules.

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HST rate increase


April 6th, 2010

Well, you can’t say you weren’t warned. ¬†Nova Scotia will be increasing its HST rate, effective July 1, 2010. ¬†Our new HST rate of 15% will mean we have the dubious distinction of one of the highest sales tax rates in Canada.

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I don’t typically like the “doom and gloom” style of reporting. ¬†After all, too much gloom tends to grow on a person, right?

However, here is a gloomy scenario that could play out in Nova Scotia.  First, a quick refresher.  In 2006 the HST rate in Nova Scotia dropped from 15% to 14%, and then dropped again in 2008 down to 13%.  These rate cuts happened after the federal government cut their federal portion of the HST.  Few people complained.

Now, however, both Nova Scotia and the federal Canadian government are severely in the red. ¬†The provincial NDP government has as good as said that they are going to raise the HST rate. ¬†On February 1, 2010 NDP Finance Minister Steele stated that: ¬†“Over the six public sessions we‚Äôve had, I would say people can accept that part of the solution is an increase in taxes, particularly the HST.” Face it, whenever a Finance Minister says something like that, we can expect a tax increase!

Over in the federal camp, the Conservatives are dead set against raising taxes. ¬†But the official opposition, the Liberals, are mumbling about increasing the GST/HST back up to what it used to be. ¬†Fortunately the odds are against it, but there’s obviously potential for both the provincial and the federal governments to increase our HST by a couple of percentage points.

The bottom line is that we may as well expect to be back up to 15% in the next year or two, and let’s hope it doesn’t go past that! ¬†It’s going to be interesting to watch, at the least.

Filed under: Business tax, Consumer Tax by David Boese 2 Comments »