Pricing your services to include GST
Under the Consumer Protection (Unfair Practices) (Jersey) Law 2018, you must price your services inclusive of applicable GST when they are being offered directly to consumers ('B2C').
Consumer Protection (Unfair Practices) (Jersey) Law on the Jersey Law website
Therefore any advertised, marketed, quoted or estimated prices should show the total (or final) price inclusive of the applicable Goods and Services Tax (GST) and any other mandatory charges.
If a tax, duty, fee or charge cannot be calculated in advance, for example, because it depends on the consumer's circumstances, the marketing communication must make it very clear that it is excluded from the advertised price and it must also state how it will be calculated.
You don’t have to include the price of goods or services in advertisements. However, if you do and it is accompanied with a verbal or visual reference to the goods or services (characteristics of the product) then this is considered to be an ‘invitation to purchase’ and therefore this price must be the total or final price inclusive of GST and mandatory charges.
The following examples will normally be considered invitations to purchase:
- an advertisement in a newspaper or on TV
- an airline website displaying offers for flights and their prices
- a radio advertisement for a mobile phone ring tone
A clear example of commercial communications which are not ‘invitations to purchase’ would be advertisements promoting a trader's 'brand' rather than any particular product (i.e. brand advertising) or the promotion of a product (using the characteristics of the product) where there is no reference to price.
The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) Committee of Advertising Practice Code contains rules regarding misleading advertising, including price statements.
The scope of the Code extends to Jersey.
Rule 3.18 states:
‘Quoted prices must include non-optional taxes, duties, fees and charges that apply to all or most buyers. However, VAT-exclusive prices may be given if all those to whom the price claim is clearly addressed pay no VAT or can recover VAT. Such VAT-exclusive prices must be accompanied by a prominent statement of the amount or rate of VAT payable.’
The full Advertising Practice Code on the ASA website
The ASA has also produced ‘best practice guidance on VAT-inclusive and VAT exclusive price claims’.
Illustrative best practice examples on the ASA website