We’ve been discussing British Columbia’s and Ontario’s transition to harmonized sales taxes for months on the blog and in Inside Internal Control, and now they’re here. In fact, as you well know, they’ve been here for more than two months, and not everyone is happy about it. British Columbians in particular are angry, and have called for a referendum on the issue, which will take place next September. Ontarians have once again shown their stoic side as the government tells them what’s best. While many have complained, no one has made a significant attempt to repeal the tax.
In any case, BC and Ontario have each got an HST now, at least for the time being, and most businesses have prudently taken the steps needed to charge, collect, remit and report the combined tax. The next step is to see how that process is working. A recent Knotia Commodity Tax News update offers a broad outline for reviewing your HST procedures
“Until you perform a post-implementation review, you will not really know how successful your transition has been. … A timely implementation review of major GST/HST changes is important in order to identify errors before they result in significant tax exposures or unclaimed tax credits for your business. … A risk-based approach is recommended, particularly where limited resources are available. Emphasis should be placed on those areas in your business that have the greatest potential for significant financial or compliance errors.”
See “How did your HST implementation go?” for a look at what you can do to make sure your HST processes are functioning as they should.
First Reference Human Resources, Internal Controls and Compliance Editor
We recently updated Not-for-Profit PolicyPro to cover when organizations need to collect the harmonized or goods and services taxes. See section 4.02 – Revenues for more information. Section 4.03 – Expenses covers HST and GST refunds for which not-for-profit organizations are eligible.