Consumer Alert – Gift Cards - Retailers Charging Sales Taxes

Retailers must not charge consumers the Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) when selling gift cards.

HST only applies on goods or services when purchased using the gift card as a payment option.

The Ministry of Consumer Services advises consumers to check their gift card receipts to ensure they are not charged HST when buying gift cards.

Prior to July 1, 2010, Retail Sales Tax (RST) did not apply to the purchase of gift cards. If RST was charged incorrectly, consumers may contact the Ministry of Revenue and claim a refund of RST paid by filing a General Application for Refund of Retail Sales Tax (PDF - 485K).

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