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How-to: Apply complex tax to expenses

Isabela Stisser
Isabela Stisser Expensify Team Posts: 186 Expensify Team
edited May 3 in How-to Docs

If you have a receipt that has more than one tax rate on it then there are two options for handling this in Expensify.

Many tax authorities do not require the reporting of tax amounts by rate and so the easiest approach is to apply the highest rate on the receipt and then modify the tax amount to reflect the amount shown on the receipt if this is less. Please check with your local tax advisor if this approach will be allowed.

Alternatively, you can apply each specific tax rate by splitting the expense into the components each rate applies to. To do this:

  • Use the Split Expense function and apply the correct tax rate to each part
  • If you don't know the portions to split the expense by (i.e. the tax inclusive amount that the tax amount on a receipt applies to), use the following formula to calculate this: (Tax amount x (100 / Tax rate)) + Tax amount

Setting up multiple taxes (GST/PST/QST) on indirect connections

Expenses sometimes have more than one tax applied to them, for example in Canada expenses can have both a Federal GST and a provincial PST or QST. 

Expensify has a special method for handling these which is to create a single tax that combines both taxes into a single effective tax rate. 

  • For example, if you have a GST of 5% and PST of 7%, adding the two tax rates together gives you the effective tax rate of 12%.


Once you have your taxes added to Expensify, you can go ahead and make use of the Multiple Tax Export you'll find under the "Export To" options!

After the report is added to your account, you will be able to select the reports you want to export (from the Reports tab) and then click Export to > Tax Report. Expensify will generate a CSV containing all the expense information including the split out taxes.

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