2. British Columbia
British Columbia’s sales tax applies to all goods and certain services sold at a retail sale in British Columbia. This generally applies to all consumer purchases, as distinguished from purchases for the purpose of resale.
Goods includes all tangible personal property and extends also to computer software and various fixtures.
The following services are generally taxable:
- services to goods such as vehicle maintenance, furniture assembly and computer repair;
- telecommunications, including internet services and certain digital and electronic media content such as music and movies; and
- various services connected with tangible personal property.
Consulting, management and financial services are not taxable.
In determining whether a sale occurs in British Columbia, it is the place of delivery, not the residence of the purchaser, that governs. Goods and services delivered by a vendor, or by a common carrier on behalf of a vendor, to the purchaser’s premises outside the province are not, therefore, subject to British Columbia’s sales tax. If, however, the goods are subsequently brought into British Columbia for consumption or use in that province then such person must voluntarily self-assess and pay British Columbia’s sales tax at that time.
If the goods or services are exempt by reason of being delivered by the vendor or shipped by common courier outside the province, the vendor must retain the carrier’s bill of lading or the equivalent in order to substantiate the extra-provincial delivery.
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