Collecting and Remitting PST
All collectors, including out of province collectors, must charge, collect and remit PST on legal services in BC.
You must report and remit to the Ministry any PST you charge, whether or not you have actually collected it from your customer. You must remit all PST charged within a reporting period no later than the last day of the month following the reporting period. For example, if you are reporting for a period ending June 30, you must file your return and remit the PST charged in that period no later than July 31.
Your reporting frequency will be determined at the time of registration based on how much PST you are estimated to collect per reporting period on sales and leases in BC. Reporting periods may be monthly, quarterly, semi-annual or annual.
If you’ve signed up for an eTaxBC account, you’ll receive an email from the ministry when your return(s) are ready instead of a paper return. You can log in to eTaxBC 24/7 to complete the report and pay process. This is the easiest and fastest way to file your return(s) and pay your taxes.
If you report and pay tax in person or by mail, you will receive a paper return from the ministry when it’s time to file and pay your taxes. If you don’t receive your return in time, you can complete a blank form.
You may file your tax returns and make payments online, through a participating financial institution, by mail or in person.
You must file a tax return even if you have no PST to report during the reporting period. In such a case, you would enter “NIL” in the appropriate space on the form.
You may file the tax return and make payments through the following methods:
- Online: You are be able to file your PST returns (including Nil returns), make payments, manage your accounts and more online. The online system, called eTaxBC, is intended to streamline business processes around reporting and remitting PST.
- Internet Banking: Check with your financial institution to see if you can file your tax returns and make payments online through their website (online banking) or through their payment and filing service.
- Electronic Funds Transfer through your financial institution.
- Mail: Send the remittance coupon, your payment and any required documentation to: The Director, Provincial Sales Tax, PO Box 9443 Stn Prov Govt, Victoria BC V8W 9W7
- In person: You can file and pay PST in person at most financial institutions, your local Service BC Centre or at 1802 Douglas Street in Victoria.
PST is not remitted out of the firm’s trust account; it should be transferred to your general account (along with the fees associated with the client matter if they have been properly billed). PST is then paid from your general account.
Note that small sellers are exempt from filing PST. A small seller would be someone who conducted less than $10,000 in gross business revenue in the prior 12 months. However, the small seller PST exemption is not available to anyone who conducts business from a commercial or leased premise or designated space in their home set aside for the purpose of that business. For more information on whether you qualify as a small seller see PST Bulletin 003.