Q: I live in Ontario, can I use my Indian Status Tax Exemption card online?
A: This is what the Ontario Ministry of Finance as to say:
Distribution Channels where the HST Point-of-Sale Exemption is not Permitted
“Vendors are not allowed to provide the point-of-sale exemption for qualifying property or services when purchased via the Internet or through other distribution channels for which the presentation of a Certificate of Indian Status card to verify eligibility is not possible. In addition, the point-of-sale exemption will not be credited on goods imported by mail or courier.
When Status Indians, Indian bands and councils of an Indian band acquire qualifying property or services through these distribution channels, they may claim a refund from the Ontario Ministry of Finance of the eight per cent Ontario component of the HST paid.” (http://www.fin.gov.on.ca/en/guides/hst/80.html#hstotherproperty)
A: This is what the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) has to say:
Sales over the telephone, Internet and other electronic means
“Vendors who make sales to Indians, Indian bands or band-empowered entities over the telephone or electronically must also maintain documentary evidence to show that the sale is relieved of tax. Since Indians cannot show their original status card or TCRD, and Indian bands and band-empowered entities cannot provide appropriate certification, when they make a purchase over the telephone or electronically, the CRA has taken the position that, to support their entitlement for tax relief, purchasers may subsequently provide a photocopy of their status card or TCRD (for Indians) or certification (for Indian bands or band-empowered entities) by mail or electronically (e.g., over the internet or by facsimile)” (http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/gm/b-039/b-039-e.html#_Toc358797810)
“When sales are made to Indians or bands, maintaining documentary evidence is only one of the conditions that must be met in order for the Indians and bands to receive relief of the GST/HST. The remaining conditions in TIB B-039 must also be met at the time of the sale. For example, if a vendor is located off a reserve and an Indian customer makes online purchases, tax relief is not available unless the goods are delivered to a reserve by the vendor or vendor's agent.” (http://www.cra-arc.gc.ca/E/pub/gi/gi-127/gi-127-e.html)
Now for the short answer, which is applicable to anyone, anywhere within Canada with an Indian Status Card:
If you live on a reserve and the goods are being delivered to a reserve = YES
If you live off reserve, or the goods are being delivered off reserve = NO
However you may claim a refund with the Ontario Ministry of Finance for the 8% portion of the Ontario HST.
What do I do if I meet these requirements?
1) Before you place your order, you must provide us (i-Bead Inc) with a copy of your status card front and back either by email: firstname.lastname@example.org or fax: 705-694-1594. (Unfortunately this also applies to anyone who has shopped in our store before).
2) You must provide us (i-Bead Inc) with your First name, Last name, Phone number, Home address (which must be on a Reservation), City, Province, Postal code, & Email address.
3) We (i-Bead Inc) will then verify your information and create you a special customer profile which is fully tax exempt.
4) Your new customer profile will be sent as an invite via email. Follow the online instructions, and happy shopping.
NOTE: If you have not done the following before placing your order, we unfortunately can no longer alter or change your order after it has been placed online.
For acceptable Status Cards, click HERE.
* i-Bead Inc, The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) & The Ontario Ministry of Finance recognizes that many First Nations people in Canada prefer not to describe themselves as Indians. However, the term Indians is used in this publication because it has legal meaning in the Indian Act.