News and Insights

British Columbia PST – What’s Taxable under the PST and What’s Not

Tax Development Dec 13, 2012

Similar to the document released by British Columbia during the transition to HST in 2010, the province has issued this document comparing the goods and services subject to the new PST, effective April 1, 2013, to the HST and the former Social Service Tax in place prior to July 1, 2010.

For the most part, the same goods and services that were subject to the Social Service Tax are going to be subject to the new PST; however, there are a few differences.  For example, PST will be applicable to Energy Star rated residential refrigerators, freezers, clothes washers, and windows since the temporary exemptions for these items expired prior to April 1, 2013.  Also, clarifications were made on the tax status of certain items, such as the following:  

  • catering and event planning services (PST-exempt);
  • electronic mail services (subject to PST);
  • voice over internet telephone services (subject to PST);
  • cleaning services (PST-exempt);
  • off-the-shelf, pre-packaged and/or pre-written software, including “apps” (subject to PST);
  • computer hardware repair services (subject to PST);
  • computer software repair services, e.g., virus removal or software installation (PST-exempt);
  • purchase of used vehicle, boat, or non-turbine aircraft from a non-GST registrant (subject to PST at 12%); and
  • delivery and courier services that are not related to the sale or lease of a taxable good (PST-exempt).    

BC – What’s Taxable and Not Taxable