Filing a GST/HST return

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Different rules apply to financial institutions.

What is the due date to file a GST/HST return?

If your reporting period is monthly or quarterly, you have to file your GST/HST return and pay the amount you owe no later than one month after the end of your reporting period.

If you have an annual reporting period, there are two possible rules, depending on your situation:

  • if you are an individual and you have a December 31 fiscal year-end, you have to file your GST/HST return by June 15 and pay the amount you owe by April 30
  • in all other cases, you have to file your GST/HST return and pay the amount you owe no later than three months after the end of your fiscal year

You have to file a GST/HST return even if you have:

  • no business transactions
  • no net tax to remit

If you are closing a GST/HST account, you need to file a final return.

When a due date falls on a Saturday, a Sunday, or a public holiday recognized by the CRAwe consider your payment to be paid on time and your return to be filed on time if we receive it or if it is postmarked on the next business day.

How do you get a GST/HST return?

If you filed your last GST/HST return electronically, the CRA will mail you an electronic filing information sheet (GST34-3). Otherwise, the CRA will mail you a personalized four-page return (GST34-2). On the first page of both there is a four-digit access code printed for electronic filing.

If you lose or did not receive either one, you can do one of the following:

  • use our GST/HST Access Code Online service to get a new access code for electronic filing
  • use the Online order form to get the non-personalized version (GST62) of the paper return
  • call 1-800-959-5525 to get a new GST34-2

How do you file a GST/HST return?

Even if you are not required to, you can file your GST/HST return online.

File online

You can file the GST/HST return for your business electronically in various ways, depending on your situation. For more information, see Which electronic filing method can you use?

To help you prepare your electronic GST/HST return, use the GST/HST Return Working Copy and keep a copy for your own records.

You can also file:

  • in person at a participating financial institution
  • by mail by sending your paper GST/HST return (GST34-2 or GST62) to the address on the return

Are you required to file electronically?

You must file your GST/HST returns electronically (GST34) if any of the following apply:

  • you have more than $1.5 million in annual taxable supplies (except for charities that are not builders);
  • you are required to report recaptured input tax credits (RITCs);
  • you are a builder (including a builder that is a charity) who either:
  • you are a builder (including a builder that is a charity) who is required to report a transitional tax adjustment amount
  • you are a builder (including a builder that is a charity) who is claiming a provincial transitional new housing rebate

Registrants who fail to file an electronic GST/HST return using the correct option will be subject to penalties.

If a rebate application related to your GST/HST return cannot be filed electronically, the rebate application should be sent by mail no later than the day you file your electronic return to the applicable tax centre noted on the rebate form.

Which electronic filing method can you use?

Use the appropriate chart to determine which electronic filing method is available to you.

Chart 1 - Builders (including builders that are charities)
Chart 1 - Builders (including builders that are charities)

Builder's situation


 

GST/HST NETFILE

 

GST/HST TELEFILE

 

GST/HST
EDI filing
and remitting
GST/HST
Internet
File Transfer
You are required to report RITCs in the reporting period cannot be used cannot be used cannot be used

You sell grandparented housing to a purchaser that cannot claim either of the following rebates:

  • GST/HST new housing rebate
  • GST/HST new residential rental property rebate
not applicable not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used

You sell housing that you purchased on a grandparented basis. The housing is subject to the HST.

cannot be used cannot be used cannot be used

You have to report a transitional tax adjustment amount

not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used
You are claiming a provincial transitional new housing rebate cannot be used cannot be used cannot be used

You meet all three of the following conditions:

  • you paid or credited the purchaser with the GST/HST new housing rebate
  • you applied for the rebate on their behalf
  • you are claiming that amount as a deduction from your net tax on your GST/HST return
not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used

You have more than $1.5 million in annual taxable sales, you are not a charity, and none of the other situations on this chart apply to you

not applicable not applicable not applicable

 

Chart 2 - Businesses other than builders
Chart 2 - Businesses other than builders

Situation


 

GST/HST NETFILE

 

GST/HST TELEFILE

 

GST/HST
EDI filing
and remitting
GST/HST
Internet
File Transfer

You have more than $1.5 million in annual taxable sales, you are not a charity or a builder, and you are not required to report RITCs

You are required to report RITCs in the reporting period

not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used not applicablecannot be used

 

What happens if you have an amount due or a GST/HST refund?

What happens if you have an amount due?

If your net tax (line 109 of your GST/HST return) for a reporting period is a positive amount, you have to make a payment.

In most cases your payment is due at the same time as your return. However, if you are an individual and you are an annual filer with a December 31 fiscal year end, you have until April 30 to make the payment even though you have until June 15 to file your GST/HST return.

For more information, see Paying the GST/HST (including instalment payments).

What happens if you have a GST/HST refund?

If your net tax (line 109 of your GST/HST return) for a reporting period is a negative amount, you can claim a refund.

You can receive your refund deposited directly into your bank account. If you are not already enrolled for direct deposit, you can sign up for it online using My Business Account, or you can fill out Form RC366, Direct Deposit Request for Businesses, and mail it to your tax centre.

What happens if you file a return late or make a late payment?

If you do not file your return on time, the CRA may charge a penalty.

If you have an overdue amount, we will charge interest.

We will hold any GST/HST refund or rebate you are entitled to until we receive all outstanding returns and amounts.  This includes all amounts payable and returns required under other programs administered by the CRA. We can also use any GST/HST refund or rebate that you are entitled to receive to pay that outstanding amount.

How can you view a previously filed GST/HST return?

You may view the status and the details of a previously filed GST/HST return using My Business Account. You will also be able to view expected/overdue GST/HST returns by using the same online service.

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