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The 8% Ontario sales tax and the 5% GST were combined into a
single 13% value-added sales tax that is federally administered, effective July 1, 2010.
What is Taxable?
Consumers now have to pay 13% HST on all goods and
services on which they previously paid 5% GST, except for several items which
were previously RST exempt and are not subject to the provincial portion of the HST.
The following are some made-in-Ontario components:
Books, children's clothing and footwear, diapers,
children's car seats and car booster seats, and feminine hygiene
products are exempt from the 8% provincial portion of the tax.
Purchasers of newly constructed homes under $400,000
are not be subject to an additional tax burden. Buyers of new
homes valued between $400,000 and $500,000 can claim a proportional
New rental housing rebate, similar to the enhanced
new housing rebate, for new residential rental properties.
Up to $400 million in one-time sales tax credits were
to be provided to help small businesses make changes to point-of-sale
and accounting systems.
Provincial portion of the tax rate on transient
accommodation, such as hotel rooms, rose from 5% to 8%.
Approximately $40 million a year will be allocated to support
destination marketing in Ontario tourism regions once these are
Qualifying prepared food and beverages that are
ready for immediate consumption and are sold for a total price of
not more than $4.00
Used vehicles purchased privately (not
from an HST registrant) are still subject to a retail sales
tax (RST) of 13% (increased from 8%).
Ontario RST continues to apply at 8% on
certain types of insurance, including house insurance,
group insurance, contributions paid into funded plans or on
benefits paid out of unfunded plans as well as payments made into
insurance schemes or compensation funds established under an Act
of Canada or Ontario. This is in addition to the Premium Tax
on certain insurance premiums. See Premium
Tax on the Revenue Ministry website.
Input Tax Credits
Businesses which are registered to collect GST or HST can
claim input tax credits to recover the GST or HST that they have paid,
with certain temporary exceptions for large businesses (see below). The change to HST will mean a significant savings and boost in
productivity for businesses in Ontario,
they no longer have to pay PST
they no longer have to prepare PST remittances
they save on consulting costs - the PST rules
are very complicated, and frequently require professional advice in
their interpretation, and courts to make the final interpretation
employees no longer have to spend time trying to find
the answers to PST questions
PST audits will be eliminated
There is a temporary restriction on input
tax credits on certain items for large businesses
(generally, those with over $10 million of taxable, including
zero-rated, sales) and financial institutions. The restriction only
applies to the provincial portion of the HST. For more
information see the CRA information Temporary
Recapture of Input Tax Credit Amounts.
Ontario Sales Tax Transition Benefit (OSTTB)
As part of the sales tax reform, cash payments were provided to Ontario
tax filers, in each of June and December 2010, and June
Eligible families with income of less than $160,000 received 3 payments totalling $1,000.
Eligible individuals who earn less than $80,000 received 3 payments totalling $300.
To qualify for the 2 payments in 2010, a 2009 tax return
must have been filed.
Individuals who turned 18 prior to December 1, 2010, or who
had a spouse or common-law partner or lived with a dependent child on May 31
or November 30, 2010, qualified for 1 or 2 of the 2010 payments.
To qualify for the 2011 payment, a 2010 tax return must
have been filed.
Tax Tip: Make sure
you file your 2009 and 2010 tax returns to get this benefit.
Transitional Rules for Ontario HST
Transitional rules are required to determine which tax
- the existing Retail Sales Tax (RST) or the Ontario component of the HST
- would apply to transactions that straddle the July 1, 2010
October 14, 2009
Certain purchasers that are non-consumers
had to self-assess the Ontario component of the HST on consideration that
due, or was paid, after October 14, 2009 and before May 1, 2010 for goods and services provided on or after July 1, 2010.
This did not apply if the non-consumer was a GST registrant and was therefore entitled to an input tax credit.
Note: Consumer means an individual
who acquires goods or services for the individual's personal consumption
or use or for the personal consumption or use of another individual..
A GST registrant in BC or Ontario should not have
been collecting the provincial portion of the HST prior to
May 1, 2010, for goods or services provided in BC or Ontario, even
if the goods or services were to be provided on or after July 1, 2010.
Prior to May 1, only the 5% GST should have been collected for these goods or
May 1, 2010
The HST generally applies to consideration that became due or
was paid on or after this date, for property and services
provided on or after July 1, 2010.
Some items addressed in the HST transitional
Funeral services - HST does not apply to
funeral services where the contract is entered into before July 1,
Transitional RST inventory rebate for
residential contracts - A rebate is available for RST
embedded in construction materials purchased before July 1, 2010, but
used in residential property contracts on or after July 1, 2010.
Subscriptions to newspapers, magazines and
other periodical publications - HST does not apply to subscriptions
paid before July 1, 2010.
Passenger transportation services - HST
generally does not apply to round-trip journeys that commence before July
Freight transportation services - HST
generally does not apply to the cost of a freight transportation service
performed on or after July 1, 2010 if the service is part of a
continuous freight movement of goods that began before July 2010.
For further information on the
HST and transitional rules, see the following: