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Claiming GST (and input tax credits)


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Small business guides > Quick guide to GST > Claiming GST (and input tax credits)

Claiming GST (and input tax credits)

GST-registered businesses can claim back the GST they pay on their purchases (ie input tax). Let’s take a look at what you can claim back and how. 

When you can claim GST back

You can claim GST back when:

  1. You are a GST-registered business.
  2. The goods or services must have been supplied to you or the goods have been imported by you.
  3. The goods or services are used or will be used for the purpose of your business.
  4. Local purchases must be supported by valid tax invoices addressed to you, or simplified tax invoices at the time of claiming the input tax.
  5. Imports must be supported by import permits which show you as the importer of the goods.
  6. The input tax is directly attributable to taxable supplies which would be taxable supplies if made in Singapore.
  7. The input tax claims are not disallowed under Regulations 26 and 27 of the GST (General) Regulations.

Claiming back GST on business expenses

The tax invoice in the name of your employee may include both business and private expenses. In this case, you need to separate the business expenses from the private expenses. The GST incurred for private expenses is not claimable.

Example: Separating Business and Personal Expenses

Your employee uses his personal mobile phone to make both private calls and business calls. The phone bill is in the name of your employee. The company reimburses him for all his calls. For the purpose of claiming input tax, you have to separate the bill into private and business expenses. The GST incurred for the making of private calls is not claimable. The GST incurred for the making of business calls is claimable if you can prove that the employee is acting as an agent of your company.

When you’re not collecting any GST

In most situations, you can claim back GST on supplies even if the end product or service that you’re selling doesn’t attract GST. 


Chapter 5: Working out your GST refund or payment

How do you keep track of the GST you’ve collected and paid, and how do you account for it in your books? We take you through the basics of GST accounting.

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