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Self-assessing GST on stock photo purchases (Canadian designers only)

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  • Self-assessing GST on stock photo purchases (Canadian designers only)

    I've always self-assessed GST on stock photo purchases that I make online. Is this correct? All of the sites I buy from are American so of course they aren't charge me GST on the purchase. I've tried to navigate Revenue Canada's website but can't seem to find the answer there. Any insight would be greatly appreciated. Thanks!

  • #2
    Hi Peressini and welcome to GDF.

    We ask all new members to read very important links here and here. These explain the rules, how the forum runs and a few inside jokes. No, you haven't done anything wrong, we ask every new member to read them. Your first few posts will be moderated, so don't panic if they don't show up immediately. Enjoy your stay.
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    • #3
      Not too many people here are going to be Canada tax experts, even though we have a few Canadian members.
      The quickest and simplest answer is to consult a tax expert directly,, even if it means hanging on the phone for a while.
      It's part of being in business.

      Part of your issue is, are you ''in business'' and where does the line get drawn on what YOU owe for taxes and what does your company owe. Does Canada discern a tax difference between a sole proprietor and a private individual? IOW, do you have to self-assess tax for everything else you buy on the internet that isn't taxed?

      Then there is the part about you selling your work. How does the tax you pay on those images fit into whatever tax you might be charging your client? Perhaps it is your client that should be paying those image taxes...

      Also, you might want to find out if there is some sort of "safe harbor" amount you can pay. The US State where I live wants their sales tax no matter where you buy your taxable stuff, but if you don't want to save all those receipts and sort out what the state thinks is taxable, then you just use the safe harbor calculator on the tax return. Not sure you can do something like that as a ''business'' though...

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