Sales Tax and Excise Tax Measures

Federal Budget Commentary 2019 - Sales Tax and Excise Tax Measures

Sales Tax and Excise Tax Measures
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Human Ova and In Vitro Embryos

Donated human ova and in vitro embryos are being used in assisted human reproduction procedures in Canada. The Budget propose to extend GST/HST relief for human ova and in vitro embryos. It is proposed that supplies and imports of human ova be relieved of the GST/HST and that imports of human in vitro embryos also be relieved of the GST/HST.

This measure applies to supplies and imports of human ova and to imports of human in vitro embryos made after March 19, 2019.

Foot-Care Devices Supplied by Order of a Podiatrist or Chiropodist

Certain foot care devices, such as orthopedic devices and anti-embolic stockings, are zero-rated and relieved from GST/HST when supplied on the written order of a physician, nurse, physiotherapist or occupational therapist. The Budget proposes to add licensed podiatrists and chiropodists to the list of practitioners on whose order supplies of foot-care devices are zero-rated.

This measure will apply to supplies of foot-care devices made after March 19, 2019.

Multidisciplinary Health-Care Services

Health-care services may be provided by a multidisciplinary health team of licensed health-care professionals consisting of a physician, an occupational therapist and a physiotherapist. When supplied separately, the services rendered by these health-care professionals would generally be exempt from GST/HST. Currently, there is no GST/HST provision that explicitly relieves the service of a multidisciplinary team that combines elements of the various practices.

The Budget proposes to exempt from the GST/HST, the supply of a service rendered by a team of health professionals, such as doctors, physiotherapists and occupational therapists, whose services are GST/HST-exempt when supplied separately. The exemption will apply where all or substantially all of the service is rendered by such health professionals acting within the scope of their profession.

This measure applies to supplies of multidisciplinary health services made after March 19, 2019.

Cannabis Taxation

Later this year, edible cannabis, cannabis extracts and cannabis topicals will be permitted for legal sale under the Cannabis Act. The Budget proposes to impose excise duties on these products (including cannabis oils) based on the quantity of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) contained in the final product. The THC-based duty will be imposed at the time of packaging of a product and become payable when it is delivered to a non-cannabis licensee such as a provincial wholesaler, retailer or individual consumer.

The combined federal-provincial territorial THC-based excise duty rate for cannabis edibles, cannabis extracts (including cannabis oils) and cannabis topicals is proposed to be $0.01 per milligram of total THC.

This measure will come into effect on May 1, 2019, subject to certain transitional rules.


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