Printed Books Sold with a Read-Only Medium or the Right to Access a Website

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A read-only medium is a tangible medium designed for storage of information and other data in digital form. A consumer can only use this medium in read mode.

The sale, for a single price, of an item comprised of a printed book and a read-only medium or the right to access a website is a zero-rated sale provided

  • the printed book and the read-only medium or the right to access a website are wrapped, packaged, combined or otherwise prepared to be sold as an inseparable whole of which they are the only components; and
  • it is reasonable to consider the printed book to be the main component of the sale.

For example, the sale, for a single price, of any of the following three items, which meet the above-mentioned requirements, is a zero-rated sale:

  1. a recipe book and a CD-ROM showing how to prepare some of the recipes in the book
  2. a psychology book and a Web companion that provides the means to access additional information online
  3. an English dictionary in book form and on CD-ROM

On the other hand, the sale, for a single price, of an item comprised of a novel and a DVD of the film version of the novel is a taxable sale, because the item sold does not meet the above-mentioned requirements.

Note
These rules take effect November 1, 2011.

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