FAQ

Customs Regulations

Do I need a "Carrier Code"?

HST

Do I have to pay HST on the goods I am importing?
How does HST work?
HST on Summit's Invoices?

Importing

Do I have to pay Washington State Tax?
What a supplier needs to know
What are the basic steps?
What does a broker do?
What does Summit need from me when importing a car?

Customs Regulations

Do I need a "Carrier Code"?

If you are bringing commercial goods across the border by yourself you will need to apply for a carrier code with Customs. A "carrier code" is a four character code that identifies the person or company that is carrying goods into Canada. This comes into effect on April 1, 2011.

Previously a carrier code was only required if you imported / carried more than 5 shipments a year on your own. For a copy of the "Carrier Code Application Form" please click "Forms" to the left.
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HST

Do I have to pay HST on the goods I am importing?

CBSA only collects the federal portion of the HST on commercial shipments. This means that you will only be paying the current 5% tax on the value of the goods at time of import. (This does not include duty and other taxes if applicable.)

On casual or personal shipments we will have to collect the whole HST on the value of the goods and on our services.
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How does HST work?

We will be charging HST on our brokerage charges based on the province in which the goods were located when they were released. We asked for a ruling on shipments going to various provinces but clearing in other provinces. The ruling came back that the rule would be that the HST is based on the province of release as stated above.

If you would like more information on this you can refer to GST/HST Bulletin B-103 which can be located on the CRA's website. This is dated June, 2010
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HST on Summit's Invoices?

The column that used to show GST now shows any applicable HST, QST, PST and GST combined on services. If there is GST or HST applicable on the value of the goods it is displayed on a separate line. Our understanding is that the total shown for this column is allowed as an "Input Tax Credit" on your "HST" return.

If you have any futher questions you may want to talk to your accountant or email us at kelowna@summitcb.com.
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Importing

Do I have to pay Washington State Tax?

Washington Sales Tax...

The following is an excerpt that shows that goods exported from Washington are tax exempt provided they meet the requirements laid out in the legislation. You should have the vendor check with their accountant to ensure that they meet the requirements.



Washington Administrative Code
WAC 458-20-193C
Imports and exports -- Sales of goods from or to persons in foreign countries.




Exports. A deduction is allowed with respect to export sales when as a necessary incident to the contract of sale the seller agrees to, and does deliver the goods (1) to the buyer at a foreign destination; or (2) to a carrier consigned to and for transportation to a foreign destination; or (3) to the buyer at shipside or aboard the buyer's vessel or other vehicle of transportation under circumstances where it is clear that the process of exportation of the goods has begun, and such exportation will not necessarily be deemed to have begun if the goods are merely in storage awaiting shipment, even though there is reasonable certainty that the goods will be exported. The intention to export, as evidenced for example, by financial and contractual relationships does not indicate "certainty of export" if the goods have not commenced their journey abroad; there must be an actual entrance of the goods into the export stream.

In all circumstances there must be (a) a certainty of export and (b) the process of export must have started.

It is of no importance that title and/or possession of the goods pass in this state so long as delivery is made directly into the export channel. To be tax exempt upon export sales, the seller must document the fact that he placed the goods into the export process. That may be shown by the seller obtaining and keeping in his files any one of the following documentary evidence:

(1) A bona fide bill of lading in which the seller is shipper/consignor and by which the carrier agrees to transport the goods sold to the foreign buyer/consignee at a foreign destination; or

(2) A copy of the shipper's export declaration, showing that the seller was the exporter of the goods sold; or

(3) Documents consisting of:

(a) Purchase orders or contracts of sale which show that the seller is required to get the goods into the export stream, e.g., "f.a.s. vessel"; and

(b) Local delivery receipts, trip sheets, waybills, warehouse releases, etc., reflecting how and when the goods were delivered into the export stream; and

(c) When available, United States export or customs clearance documents showing that the goods were actually exported; and

(d) When available, records showing that the goods were packaged, numbered, or otherwise handled in a way which is exclusively attributable to goods for export.

Thus, where the seller actually delivers the goods into the export stream and retains such records as above set forth, the tax does not apply. It is not sufficient to show that the goods ultimately reached a foreign destination; but rather, the seller must show that he was required to, and did put the goods into the export process.
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What a supplier needs to know

Overview of Shipping to Canada

The first step is the company in Canada will purchasing goods from you. Generally you will agree how the goods are to be shipped and who is responsible for the freight. When the goods are shipped the carrier or freight company is usually the one who faxes the documents to the Customs broker to let them know when and where they will be crossing into Canada. The "supplier" of the goods should provide the carrier with proper documents as outlined below.

Documents Required

Information Required for Invoices