B.C. retailers need new PST number to make sales and receive exemptions

With impending return of the Provincial Sales Tax (PST), retailers are being reminded they need to have a new PST account number.

With only a few days left before the return of the Provincial Sales Tax (PST), retailers that have not yet registered for the PST are being reminded they need to have a new PST account number in order to make retail sales and leases and to purchase inventory tax exempt starting April 1.

A retailer of PST taxable goods or services is required to register under the PST Act. Those wishing to make a taxable sale or lease on April 1 must be registered to levy and collect the tax on transactions.

Registration is fast and easy online at: www.gov.bc.ca/pst. Over 63,000 businesses have already registered.

Businesses will not be able to purchase goods from their supplier tax exempt without providing a PST number or completing a certificate of exemption.

These items include:

  • Goods purchased solely for resale or lease
  • Software or telecommunication services purchased solely for resale
  • Goods or software purchased to be incorporated into goods for resale

Suppliers must show the PST registration number on the invoice or sales document, or maintain a properly completed certificate of exemption, to support their non collection of the tax.

Otherwise, they are required to charge the tax on the sale, and purchasers will have to apply for a refund of the tax after the item is sold at retail.

A wide range of tools and services are available to help businesses prepare for the re-implementation of the PST including:

  • One-on-one consultations with a government tax specialist.
  • Online webinars covering the general principles of the PST and eTaxBC.
  • PST bulletins and notices.
  • Videos online: Returning to the PST – An Overview for Business and PST in B.C. Online Registration
  • Businesses with questions about the PST can call our toll-free help line, 1-877-388-4440, or email questions to CTBTaxQuestions@gov.bc.ca

Final regulations and legislation to re-implement the PST on April 1 are now available.

Quick Facts

Businesses that sell or lease taxable goods, or sell software or taxable services in B.C. must register to obtain a new PST number, even if they have an old PST number.

Businesses can register three ways:

  1. Online – go to: www.gov.bc.ca/etaxbc/register
  2. In person – go to the nearest Service BC Centre. See locations at www.servicebc.gov.bc.ca.
  3. By mail or fax – complete the Application for Registration for Provincial Sales Tax (FIN 418) found at www.gov.bc.ca/pst – go to Forms and Publications.

A new PST number will be assigned once the business registration application is processed.

– Submitted by the Government of B.C.’s Ministry of Finance