On July 1, 2010, British Columbia and Ontario are migrating their provincial sales taxes to a single sales tax harmonized with the federal GST.
The new unified HST is administered federally. In British Columbia, the rate is 12%. Of that, 7% is allocated to the provincial government, while 5% goes the federal government. For Ontario, the overall rate is 13% – where 8% is provincial and 5% is federal.
For businesses, this change will simplify the reporting and remittance of sales taxes. You will no longer have to remit separate taxes federally and provincially. The change to HST means you will have to handle one set of forms, make one payment and have a single point of contact at the government.
Generally, if you area already registered for the GST, there is no extra registration required. Your HST reporting will be the same as the GST reporting and your input tax credit will be the same as under the GST.
You will need to modify your accounting, billing and invoicing systems, as well as any cash register and point of sale systems to move from GST/PST to the new HST.
If you are using an automated accounting package such as Simply Accounting , QuickBooks or Fresh Books you may need to upgrade your package.