This post covers the GST payments dates for 2021 and provides a guide to the GST/HST credit program in Canada.
You’ll learn about the eligibility, how to apply, how much you can expect to receive and the other related provincial programs.
GST/HST Payment Dates 2021
The GST/HST payment dates for 2021 are:
|Benefit Quarter||GST/HST Payment Dates|
|Quarter 1||January 5th, 2021|
|Quarter 2||April 1st, 2021|
|Quarter 3||July 5th, 2021|
|Quarter 4||October 5th, 2021|
The GST payment dates usually fall on the fifth day of each payment quarter with the exception of April 2021 when 5th was Easter Monday.
To ensure you receive your payments on time without disruption on the dates above, it is recommended that you enroll for direct deposit.
If you’re enrolled for direct deposit and did not receive your payments on the GST payment dates for 2021, you should wait for at least 10 working days before you contact CRA.
Note: Those that receive their payments by cheque may not receive their credits on the GST/HST payments dates above depending on the mail service in their area.
What is the GST/HST Credit?
The goods and services tax/harmonized sales tax (GST/HST) credit is a quarterly payment to individuals and families with low to modest income. The payment is tax-free and is designed to offset or compensate for some of the sales taxes that Canadians pay through GST and HST.
GST/HST credit was introduced in 1991 and currently benefits about 12 million Canadians with modest income.
Depending on where you live, the GST payment may also include payments from other provincial and territorial programs.
GST Credit Eligibility: Do You Qualify?
You are eligible for GST/HST credit if you’re a resident of Canada for tax purposes at the beginning of the payment month and you satisfy one of the following:
- Aged 19 or above
- a parent that lives or lived with a child
- have or had a spouse or common-law partner
Your family net income is also a big factor used in determining your eligibility and how much you can receive as GST/HST credit. We’ll cover the income limits in detail below.
Also, you must have filed your income tax returns for the previous year and have a social insurance number. Even if you had no income, you must still file a tax returns to be eligible for the credit.
If you don’t have a SIN but meet all the other eligibility conditions above, you may still be able to receive the GST/HST credit.
Simply include a note explaining why you don’t have a SIN in your GST/HST application to CRA and include a copy of a document that proves your identity such as passport, a document issued by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, driver’s license and so on.
Some groups of people are ineligible for GST/HST credit if at the beginning of the GST/HST payment month they are:
- Confined to prison or other correctional institutions for 90 consecutive days or more
- Foreign officers or servants that don’t pay taxes in Canada, and their families or employee
- Non-resident of Canada for income tax purposes
How much can you receive as GST/HST Credit?
For the GST/HST credit period covering July 2021 to June 2022, you can receive up to $456 if you’re single, $598 if you have a spouse or common-law partner and $157 for each child below 19 that lives with you.
Your actual GST/HST credit amounts are calculated based on your:
- individual or family net income and
- the number of children below 19 you have
For the purpose of GST/HST, the payment period is not a calendar period. It runs from July to June. But the income used in calculating how much you can receive is based on the previous year’s income – also called the base year.
Here’s an illustration: 2020 is the base year for the GST/HST period that starts in July 2021 and ends in June 2022. That means, the net income reported on line 23600 of your 2020 income tax returns plus that of your spouse, if applicable, will be used to calculate your GST credit payments.
Therefore, filing your tax returns is very important and a requirement for receiving GST credits.
Maximum Income for GST/HST Credit
Recall that the GST credit is meant for low to medium income Canadians. So your credit starts reducing once your income exceeds a particular threshold and no payment will be received beyond an income level.
For the 2021 GST/HST payment period, the credit for singles with no children is completely clawed back when the net income reaches $48,012.
Married couples with no children will have their GST credit reduced to $0 when their family net income equals or exceeds $50,852. The table below provides the maximum income amounts at which the GST/HST credit will not be paid:
|# of Children||Singles||Married/Common-law Couple|
How GST/HST Credit Payment is Calculated
There are 3 components for the GST/HST credit amount:
- Base credit: This is an amount of $299
- Additional credit: a supplement of up to $157 that is available to those with a family net income above $9,686
- Credit reduction: representing a 5% claw back of the GST/HST credit after the net income exceeds $38,892
Effectively, you can expect your GST/HST credit payment to start reducing once your income exceeds $38,892 and to be completely clawed back when it gets to the amounts shown in the table above.
You can use the CRA GST/HST credit calculation sheets for the July 2021 – June 2022 period to calculate how much you’ll receive.
But a quicker option is to use the Child and Family benefits calculator. It’ll provide a summary of all your benefits including Canada Child Benefits if applicable.
How to Apply for GST/HST Credit
Most eligible Canadians don’t have to apply separately for the GST/HST credit. The Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) will automatically access your eligibility for the credit and pay you quarterly if you’re eligible.
However, you’ll have to apply for GST/HST if you are either:
- A newcomer to Canada; or
- Have a new child that is not enrolled for CCB
Newcomers to Canada GST/HST Application
If you’re a newcomer to Canada, you can apply for the credit using one of two forms:
- Form RC151, GST/HST credit application for individuals who become residents of Canada if you don’t have children
- Form RC66, Canada Child Benefit Application form if you have a child
Simply complete the applicable forms and mail them to the CRA tax office closest to you for processing.
GST/HST Credit For a New Child
Whether you just had a new child or a child just started living with you, you can apply for the GST/HST credit by completing a CCB application or adding the child to your household.
The easiest way to do this is by logging into your CRA My Account. Alternatively, you can fill a CCB application form and mailing to CRA.
GST Credit and Change in Situations
You should inform CRA as soon as possible if your situation changes. This is because some changes may affect your GST credit.
Some of the changes you should report to CRA include:
- Change in marital status
- Death of a GST/HST credit recipient
- Change in the number of children
- Change in address
- You, or a spouse, cease to be a resident of Canada
A reassessment of your tax returns that changes your family net income will also affect your GST credit, but CRA will update your payments automatically from their end.
You can contact CRA by phone or update your status using CRA My Account or the MyBenefits CRA mobile app. A Form RC65, Marital Status Change may also be mailed to a tax office if your marital status changes and you prefer that the paper option.
If you don’t inform CRA on time and you’re overpaid, you’ll have to repay the overpayment. Your future payments will be withheld and used to cover the overpayments until the balance owing is fully paid.
However, CRA has temporarily suspended this practice due to COVID-19.
Provincial/Territorial Programs administered with GST/HST Credit
CRA administers several provincial programs along with the GST/HST credit.
But you don’t have to apply for them. You’ll be automatically considered for them if you’re eligible and the payments combined with your GST credit payments.
- BC climate action tax credit: a non-taxable amount designed to offset the carbon taxes paid by low-income individuals and families. It provides a credit of $174 for each adult and $51 for each child below 19.
- New Brunswick harmonized sales tax credit: another non-taxable credit that pays up to a maximum amount of $300 to individuals. Spouses can also get $300 and $100 for each child below 19. Benefit claw back (2%) starts beyond an income of $35,000.
- Newfoundland and Labrador income supplement: is for low income individuals, families, seniors and people living with disabilities. Singles can receive up to $450, $510 for spouses and $200 for each child below 19.
- Newfoundland and Labrador seniors’ benefit: provides an annual amount of $1,313 to seniors with income of $29,402 or lower. It is fully clawed back for those with income exceeding $40,663
- Northwest Territories cost of living offset: a non-taxable credit of $156 for individuals, $156 for spouses and $180 for each child below 18. The credit is not income-tested so the amounts are not reduced based on income.
- Nova Scotia affordable living tax credit: pays $255 for individuals and couples, with $60 per child below 19. Benefit claw back of 5% starts at a family net income of $30,000
- Ontario sales tax credit: administered with the Ontario Trillium Benefit and it is meant to offset the sales tax paid by low to modest income families. The benefit pays $313 per adult and the same amount for each child below 19 years. The claw back starts at $24,115 for individuals and $30,143 for families.
- Prince Edward Island sales tax credit: non-taxable benefit that pays $110 to individuals and an extra $55 for spouses and eligible dependents.
- Saskatchewan low-income tax credit: pays $346 for individuals, the same amount to their spouses and $136 for each child below 19 years. The annual amount is capped at $964 per family.
- Yukon government carbon price rebate – individuals: a non-taxable credit to offset the federal carbon pollution pricing level. Individuals and their spouses can receive up to $192, and the same amount for each child below 19 years.
All these programs are fully funded by the provincial and territorial governments.
Other Government Credits
Here are some of the other government credits and programs you may be eligible for:
Canada Child Benefit (CCB): A monthly financial assistance program for Canadians with children. It is an income-tested benefit and eligible families can receive up to a maximum of $563.75 per year for each child.
Check this post on Canada Child Benefit Payment Dates to learn more.
Canada Workers Benefit (CWB): is another government measure for low income Canadians. A single individual that is eligible for CWB can receive up to $1,381 as the basic amount, while families can get a maximum of $2,379 in most provinces.
Learn more about the program, its eligibility and how to apply in this post: CWB Payment dates.
As a low to modest income earner, you may also qualify for other provincial government financial assistance programs. Check some of the links below to learn more about a few of the programs.
Provincial GST and HST Rates
The Goods and services tax (GST) is a federal government tax so it applies in all provinces and territories.
In addition, many provinces also charge a provincial sales tax (PST). Alberta and the 3 provinces (Northwest Territories, Nunavut and Yukon) are the exceptions.
Some provinces combine the GST and PST together and charge a single rate, while others administer the sales taxes separately.
Where the taxes are combined, they are called Harmonized sales tax or HST. This is the case in Ontario, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Newfoundland and Labrador, and Prince Edward Island.
The table below shows the GST, PST and HST for each of the Canadian provinces and territories:
|Province/Territory||GST (%)||PST (%)||Total (%)|
|Prince Edward Island||5||10||15|
GST Increase 2021
The new GST/HST payment period will start in July 2021 and end by June 2022. However, there won’t be an increase to the GST amounts outside of the normal annual inflation indexation.
GST/HST credit, like many other government credits and benefits, is indexed against inflation. That means, there would be slight increases every year to reflect the rise in general prices of goods and services.
Starting in July 2021, the maximum GST/HST credit for an individual will be $456 from $451 in the previous period. Families receiving the maximum GST credit will also see a slight increase of $6 from $592 to the new $598
And for each eligible child, you can expect to receive an extra $2.
As part of its emergency response to COVID-19, the federal government paid a one-time supplemental GST/HST credit in 2020.
Eligible individuals and families got double the amount they would have qualified for. However, there is no such supplements for 2021.
Some FAQs: GST/HST Payment Dates
GST credits are usually paid on the 5th day of each payment month unless it falls on a public holiday, in which case it will be paid on the previous business day. The payment months are January, April, July and October.
The total GST/HST credit you’re entitled to is divided into 4 and paid quarterly on the GST payment dates. However, the credit will be paid as a lump sum if the amount will work out to less than $50 per quarter. If this is the case, the GST credit will be paid in July.
Retroactive payments of GST/HST credits are allowed for up to 3 years. But you’ll have to make the request through the CRA Taxpayer relief provisions. Learn more about it here.
Like the Canada Child Benefit, the GST credit is not taxable. It is a tax-free benefit. That means you won’t have to include it as income when filing your income tax return.
Singles can receive up to $456 for the GST/HST credit period covering July 2021 to June 2022. If you have a spouse or common-law partner, you can get $598 and $157 for each child below 19 that lives with you.
If you didn’t receive your payment on the GST payment dates, CRA recommends you wait for 10 business days before contacting them. In the mean time, you can check your My Account for any correspondence with CRA.
The GST/HST credit is one of the most popular government credits in Canada. Hope you found this post about GST/HST payment dates, its eligibility and rates useful.
If you have any questions about the GST program, please leave a comment below.