Quebec Is Getting Rid Of Sales Tax On Masks & Face Shields This Month

Good news, my fellow mask-wearers! You'll soon be able to buy certain face masks in Quebec tax-free — although it's only temporary.

The Canadian government issued its Fall Economic Statement 2020 on November 30, which declared a new measure in which certain masks and face shields will be sold tax-free.

On December 1, the provincial government announced that it is "following suit with the federal government and announcing today that, like the goods and services tax (GST), the Québec sales tax (QST) will be temporarily eliminated on purchases of masks and face shields."

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The government is temporarily eliminating the Québec sales taxes on masks and face shields.

The Government of Quebec

Eric Girard, Minister of Finance, told the population, "We are working together with the federal government to offer individuals and businesses all the necessary support during this crisis. The temporary zero-rating of masks and face shields reflects this commitment."

The Canadian government tells us that for masks and face shields to be considered under the "zero-rating" for the GST tax, they will have to meet various specifications.

For face masks, both medical and non-medical, to be eligible, they must

  • [be] made of multiple layers of dense material, but may have a portion in front of the lips made of transparent and impermeable material that permits lip reading provided that there is a tight seal between the transparent material and the rest of the face mask or respirator;
  • [be] large enough to completely cover the nose, mouth and chin without gaping;
  • ha[ve] ear loops, ties or straps for securing the face mask or respirator to the head; and
  • [...] not have an exhalation valve or vent.

Or, as long as they are "authorized for medical use in Canada, or meets N95, KN95 or equivalent certification requirements."

As for face shields, they must fully cover one's face, have "a transparent and impermeable window or visor, ... [and] ha[ve] a head strap or cap for holding it in place."

The Canadian government and Quebec government are both putting this temporary measure will be put into action as of December 6.