Building Service Contracts

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An Attestation de Revenu Québec is required for certain building service contracts. The obligations respecting the Attestation apply to all tiers of subcontract in this sector of activity.

Persons and contracts concerned

Building service business

A building service business is a person registered for the QST that has an establishment in Québec and has maintenance work wholly or partly carried out by a subcontractor. This excludes the owner, tenant or administrator of the public building being maintained.

Subcontractor

A subcontractor is a person registered for the QST that has an establishment in Québec and does maintenance work.

Maintenance contract

A maintenance contract is a contract or part of a contract between a building service business and subcontractor that is carried out in Québec and entails maintenance work.

Maintenance work

“Maintenance work” and “public building” are defined in the Decree respecting building service employees in the Québec region and the Decree respecting building service employees in the Montréal region.

Note
  • An employee of a building service business is not subject to the obligations respecting the Attestation de Revenu Québec.
  • The obligations apply to a building service business that is a franchisor as well as its subcontractor franchisee.
  • The obligations also apply to a building service business or a subcontractor that is a partnership. 
  • To find out the types of work and buildings covered by the decrees, call the Comité paritaire de l'entretien des édifices public at 418 667-3551 (Québec City region) or 514 384-6640 (Montréal region).

Example 1

Under a maintenance contract between a building service business and a subcontractor, the parties must meet the Attestation obligations in the following two cases:

  • A maintenance contract of unspecified duration continues or is entered into by both parties after January 1, 2021, regardless of its value.

    Example

    A building service business and a subcontractor enter into a maintenance contract of unspecified duration on November 15, 2020. If work under the contract continues after January 1, 2021, the parties must meet the Attestation obligations.  

    Likewise, if a building service business and a subcontractor enter into a maintenance contract of unspecified duration on February 15, 2021, the parties must meet the Attestation obligations since the contract begins after January 1, 2021.

  • The specified-length contract(s) between the subcontractor and business total $10,000 or more (excluding taxes) during a calendar year.

    Example

    On January 15, 2021, a building service business and subcontractor enter into a three-month contract for maintenance work ending in April 2021. The contract is worth $6,000. Since it is the only specified-length contract between the parties and the contract's value is less than $10,000, the parties do not have to meet the Attestation obligations. 

    The building service business and subcontractor later enter into a new five-month contract worth $8,000 (taxes excluded) on June 1, 2021. Since the total value of the two contracts in the same calendar year is $14,000 ($6,000 contract entered into on January 15, 2021, and $8,000 contract entered into on June 1, 2021) and therefore greater than $10,000 (excluding taxes), the parties must now meet the Attestation obligations.

Calculating the value of specified-length contracts

To determine whether the value of one or more specified-length contracts between a building service business and a subcontractor total $10,000 or more during a calendar year, the following stipulations apply: 

  • For contracts before January 1, 2021, take into account only the part of the contract cost for maintenance work after that date in calculating the limit.

    Example

    On November 1, 2020, a building service business and a subcontractor entered into a four-month contract for maintenance work from November 1, 2020, to February 28, 2021. The contract is worth $16,000, paid in four equal monthly payments of $4,000 over the contract period ($16,000 / 4 months = $4,000). Since the work will continue after January 1, 2021, and into January and February 2021, the value of the part of the contract for maintenance work after January 1, 2021, is $8,000 ($4,000 for January 2021 and $4,000 for February 2021). In this case, the parties do not have to meet the Attestation obligations because only one specified-length contract is involved and the value of maintenance work to be carried out after January 1, 2021, is less than $10,000.   

    The building service business and subcontractor later enter into a new five-month contract worth $7,000 (excluding taxes) on May 1, 2021. Since the first contract for maintenance work in January and February 2021 ($8,000) and the second contract entered into in calendar year 2021 ($7,000) are worth a total of $15,000, they exceed the $10,000 (excluding taxes) limit, and the parties must now meet the Attestation obligations.

  • Do not include GST or QST in the calculation.

The Attestation obligations that apply to a building service business and subcontractor for a given year apply for all subsequent years, regardless of the value of later contracts.

Attestation period of validity

The Attestation is valid until the end of the month in which it was issued and for the following three months. The date on which the period of validity ends is shown on the Attestation.

A valid Attestation is required to cover all subsequent maintenance contracts between the same parties during the Attestation period of validity.

Example

On January 15, 2021, a building service business and subcontractor enter into a 12-month contract worth $12,000 (excluding taxes). Since the contract is worth over $10,000, the parties must meet the Attestation obligations. 

The work start date under the contract is January 22, 2021. The subcontractor must therefore hold a valid Attestation by that date and give a copy of it to the building service business, which must also meet its obligations.  

On January 20, 2021 (two days before work starts), the subcontractor requests and receives an Attestation using our online services. The subcontractor gives the building service business a copy on the same date. The Attestation is valid until April 30, 2021 (three months following the month it was issued).  

On March 15, 2021, the same parties enter into a new maintenance contract for another public building. The Attestation obligations also apply to this contract. Since the new contract is entered into while the initial Attestation for the contract dated January 15, 2021, is still valid, the subcontractor does not need to obtain a new Attestation or give a copy of it to the building service business for the March, 15, 2021, contract. A single Attestation is sufficient for both contracts.

Did you know?

You can sign up for automatic renewal in My Account to have a new Attestation automatically deposited in the business's file a few days before its old one expires. To be eligible, the business must have at least one valid Attestation.

Obligations of subcontractor

The subcontractor must hold a valid Attestation throughout the period during which it does maintenance work under a contract subject to the obligations.

In addition, the subcontractor must give the building service business a copy of each Attestation it is required to hold, no later than the day on which the maintenance work begins or the day after the last day on which the Attestation is valid.

Notes
  • If a contract subject to the obligations is underway on January 1, 2021, the subcontractor must hold a valid Attestation and give the maintenance business a copy of it by January 1, 2021.
  • If the subcontractor is not registered for the QST when maintenance work begins under a contract that would otherwise be subject to the obligations but registers for the QST before work under the contract ends, the subcontractor must obtain a valid Attestation and give it to the business no later than 30 days following the date on which it registered.

Obligations of the building service business

The building service business must obtain a copy of each Attestation each of its subcontractors is required to hold.

No later than the day on which the maintenance work begins or the day after the last day on which the Attestation is valid, the business must also verify each Attestation from the subcontractor using the Mandatory Verification of an Attestation de Revenu Québec service in My Account for businesses.

In addition, the business must report the amounts the subcontractor billed it in each calendar quarter using the Report Amounts Billed Under a Contract for Maintenance Work in a Public Building in My Account for businesses. The amounts must be reported by the last day of the month following the end of the calendar quarter as follows:

  • April 30 for the quarter ending on March 31;
  • July 31 for the quarter ending on June 30;
  • October 31 for the quarter ending on September 30;
  • January 31 for the quarter ending on December 31.
Notes
  • If a contract subject to the obligations is underway on January 1, 2021, the building service business must obtain an Attestation from the subcontractor, validate it and verify its authenticity by January 1, 2021. In addition, in its consumption taxes return for the quarter ending on March 31, 2021, the building service business must include all amounts that the subcontractor billed it before January 1, 2021, for maintenance work under the contract that was done after that date.
  • If the building service business is not registered for the QST when maintenance work begins under a contract that would otherwise be subject to the obligations but registers for the QST before work under the contract ends, the business must meet the obligations no later than 30 days following the date on which it registered. It must also report, in its first consumption taxes return, any amounts billed before that date for work done after that date.

Penalties

If a building service business and subcontractor do not comply with any of the obligations respecting the Attestation de Revenu Québec, they are liable to penalties for each quarter of non-compliance.

Subcontractors

  • Subcontractors are liable to a penalty of 0.2% of all amounts billed (excluding taxes) under a contract in the quarter in which the non-compliance occurred, multiplied by the number of days of non-compliance in the quarter.  
  • The penalties range from $175 to $950 for each quarter.

Building service businesses

Building service businesses are liable to a penalty of 0.4% of all amounts billed to them (excluding taxes) under a contract in the quarter in which the non-compliance occurred, multiplied by the greater of the following:  

  • the number of days in the quarter in which the business failed to comply with the obligation to obtain and verify an Attestation de Revenu Québec from the subcontractor; or
  • the number of days in the quarter in which the business failed to comply with the obligation to report the amounts billed to it, to a maximum of 90 days.

The penalties range from $350 to $2,850 each quarter.

Additional failure to comply

The penalties will be doubled for additional failures in the three-year period following the date of a notice of assessment charging a penalty.

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