Bellatoris Consulting, LLC

Can You Tax a Touchdown?

In Compliance on September 19, 2011 at 11:27 PM

If you want a good laugh, do a search on YouTube for touchdown celebrations.  (Remember the Ickey Shuffle??)

Wouldn’t it be great if you could get away with that kind of tomfoolery at your job?  The next time you turn in your TPS reports, slam them to the ground and do a little jig.  If it catches on with your co-workers, please let me know!

Believe it or not, sales tax auditors celebrate touchdowns like any other football fans.  Well, the touchdowns I’m talking about aren’t the ones on the football field.  Instead, I’m talking about cases where your company takes first possession of tangible property (e.g. computers, machinery, equipment, etc.) from your vendors.

Here’s a common scenario that I see: Company A  has an office in Virginia (or any other state without a temporary storage exemption) where they receive a shipment of 100 laptops.  Once the IT department opens the box, they decide to ship the laptops to employees located across the country.

In this example, Virginia would assert a sales tax liability on ALL 100 of those laptops because Company A took first possession of them in Virginia.  Even though they were immediately sent out of Virginia, auditors would have a lawful claim in this case.  As you can imagine, this is often a gold mine for auditors.

Don’t get caught by surprise during your next sales tax audit.  Do you know if your company receives property in states that don’t have an exemption for temporary storage?

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