Frequently Asked Questions
What is a commodity tax review?
A commodity tax review is a review of your expenses (not all of your financial data) to see if you have paid taxes that you are entitled to recover. Commodity taxes include GST, PST (Provincial Sales Tax), HST, QST (Quebec Sales Tax), Hotel Room Tax, Fuel Taxes and any other usage taxes which may be applicable within your industry.
A commodity tax review does not typically look at tax collected on sales or income tax.
Is the review process confidential?
Absolutely. All findings and client data are held in the strictest confidence. Our Working Agreement also includes a non-disclosure clause.
How is the tax recovered?
We recover both federal and provincial taxes.
GST, HST, QST are federal taxes which according to government legislation are recovered by journal entry. We provide the entry to you. You realize this recovery when you record the entry which reduces the amount of tax that you owe and remit.
Provincial Sales Tax and other provincial usage taxes are recovered when we file an Application For Refund to the Ministry of Finance on your behalf. You realize this recovery when you receive your refund cheque.
Will a refund application trigger a tax audit?
Filing an Application For Refund won’t normally trigger a tax audit. In fact we have only seen it happen once, and we pre-warned our client it likely would occur. In this specific case, we were filing an application to recover over a million dollars from BC PST, who had never done an audit on this client. We informed our client their audit exposure, in our opinion, was minimal and the client readily agreed to file the refund application. The client was audited and assessed approximately $10,000; however, they received a refund of over one million dollars.
Why should a client have a commodity tax review completed by Taxtics?
Oversights are more apparent to an independent set of eyes.
Your employees and accountants are usually not experts in commodity tax legislation which has many grey areas that are clear to us, but not necessarily to our clients. We have years of experience in filing tax recovery applications and know where to look for these grey areas.
Your accounting firm does not look at your expenses with the same level of detail that we do – we look at each invoice for the prior four years to see if you have paid tax you are entitled to recover. No client would want to pay their accounting firm to look at every invoice – it would be cost prohibitive.
Accounting firms are typically not experts in commodity tax legislation. Their forte is audit, income tax, and business planning. We are the experts in commodity tax recovery.
Will my staff have to spend much time on this process?
No. Taxtics does all of the work. We meet with you or your controller, on site, and spend about 15 to 20 minutes reviewing a questionnaire in order to understand how your specific business operates and to determine areas of potential recovery. Then you just point us to your records. We do the rest.
What happens if I don’t want to file a refund application?
We review our findings with you prior to filing any refund applications. If we are not able to make you comfortable with the filing, we will not proceed.
What will the review cost?
Our fee is contingency based so you only pay us on realized recoveries.
Should it happen that we find nothing there’s absolutely no cost to you.
When do we pay Taxtics?
On refund applications our fee is due when you receive your refund cheque. You provide Taxtics with a copy of your refund cheque and we generate our invoice which is due within 15 days.
In other recovery instances our fee is due once you have realized the reduction in your expenses.
Overpaying Commodity Taxes?
We can help. Contact us today.
“Linda Pomerleau was polite, quick and efficient and worked quietly on her own as she reviewed current and historical data. She was very knowledgeable in knowing what to look for and what our tax exemptions were. She kept us up-to-date on anything that was delayed or in question.
We were very happy with the results and would highly recommend Taxtics.“
— Joyce Vandermey, Owner, West Coast Floral Ltd.