Goods and Services Tax or GST is often a consumption tax that’s charged of many products and services sold within Canada, no matter where your enterprise is located. At the mercy of certain exceptions, every business are required to charge GST, currently at 5%, plus applicable provincial sales taxes. A company effectively represents a realtor for Revenue Canada by collecting the required taxes and remitting them on the periodic basis. Companies are also permitted claim the taxes paid on expenses incurred that report with their business activities. These are termed as Input Tax Credits.
Does Your company Need to Register? Prior to starting virtually any commercial activity in Canada, all businesses must figure out how the GST and relevant provincial taxes sign up for them. Essentially, all companies that sell products and services in Canada, to make money, have to charge GST, with the exception of the following circumstances:
Estimated sales for that business for 4 consecutive calendar quarters is expected to become under $30,000. Revenue Canada views these companies as small suppliers plus they are therefore exempt.
The company activity is GST exempt. Exempt goods and services includes residential land and property, nursery services, most medical and health services etc.
Although a little supplier, i.e. a company with annual sales below $30,000 is not needed to produce GST, in some cases it can be beneficial to do this. Since an enterprise are only able to claim Input Tax Credits (GST paid on expenses) if they are registered, companies, especially in the set up phase where expenses exceed sales, may find that they are in a position to recover a significant amount of taxes. This has to be balanced contrary to the potential competitive advantage achieved from not charging the GST, along with the additional administrative costs (hassle) from being forced to file returns.
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