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How To File Sales Tax Return

Filing sales tax returns for your online store can be a complex process, as sales tax rules and regulations vary by state. Sales tax is governed at the state level, and each state has its own rules regarding when a business has a sales tax obligation. There are more than 12,000 tax jurisdictions in the U.S., and each jurisdiction has different tax rates and product taxability rules. Therefore, determining sales tax liability, the correct tax rate and sales tax filing requirements in a particular state can be extremely challenging.

If you want to know when and how to file sales tax for your online store in a particular state, we have come up with this guide to help you do sales tax filing for your e-commerce store. In this guide, we have listed out the platforms where you have to register for sales tax filing and how you can file sales tax for your online store in a state.

Sales Tax Filing

1. Alabama

Filing sales tax returns in Alabama involves several steps. First, you need to register for a sales tax account with the Alabama Department of Revenue (ALDOR). You can register online through the My Alabama Taxes (MAT) portal on the ALDOR website.

The MAT portal is the online platform provided by the ALDOR for various tax-related activities, including sales tax filing. You can access it on the ALDOR website.

Note that the ALDOR also provides ONE Spot, that is, Optional Network Election for Single Point Online Transactions. ONE Spot provides a single point of filing for all state-administered local sales, use, rental, and lodgings taxes, as well as, non-state-administered sales, use, rental, and lodgings taxes through My Alabama Taxes.

2. Alaska

Alaska is unique among U.S. states in that it does not have a statewide sales tax. However, some local jurisdictions within Alaska may impose local sales taxes.

The State of Alaska allows jurisdictions across the state to implement local sales tax collection requirements and tax laws governing sales tax collection. Since 2020, several municipal governments in Alaska have been collecting sales tax on remote purchases.

To implement the remote sales tax collection, the taxing jurisdictions must join the Alaska Remote Seller Sales Tax Commission (ARSSTC). Further, they need to adopt the new sales tax rules regarding remote sales laid out in the Uniform Code. Remote sellers start sales tax collection after a jurisdiction adopts the remote sales tax Uniform Code.

3. Arizona

If you plan to sell tangible goods or engage in services in Arizona, then you must obtain a TPT License from the Arizona Department of Revenue (ADOR) to pay Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT).

The Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT) is a tax imposed on the vendor for the privilege of doing business within the state. It is a transaction-based tax that applies to various business activities, including retail sales, leasing or renting of tangible personal property, and certain services.

Note that TPT is often referred to as a “sales tax,” however it is a bit different from the sales tax systems found in many other states.

Unlike traditional sales taxes typically collected from the end consumer, the TPT is imposed on businesses at various points in the transaction process. This means businesses (sellers) are responsible for collecting and remitting the tax, and it can apply to business-to-business transactions as well as sales to end consumers.

Though businesses (sellers) may pass the burden of the TPT tax onto the consumers (buyers), it is ultimately the businesses who remain liable to the state for the tax.

Now, Arizona’s TPT system is known for its complexity because it allows various cities and counties in the state to impose their own local TPT rates on top of the state base rate.

To file and pay state taxes like TPT, you can either file Forms by mail or file TPT Returns electronically through the Arizona Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT) E-file system at www.AZTaxes.gov .Note that businesses with only one physical location still have the option to paper file. However, businesses with more than one physical location mandatorily need to file electronic returns on www.aztaxes.gov.

Businesses that can still paper file must note that old TPT-1 has been replaced and there are now 2 forms: the TPT-EZ and the TPT-2. TPT-EZ is a simplified version of the TPT return and is designed for businesses with simpler tax liabilities. Not all businesses qualify to use this form. The TPT-2 Form is the Transaction Privilege, Use, and Severance Tax Return, which businesses use to report their TPT liability. This form is to be used for any business whose information exceeds that which can be contained on the TPT-EZ form.

4. Arkansas

All online and other remote, out-of-state sellers who do not have a physical presence in Arkansas but sell and deliver their products and services in Arkansas are required to collect and remit state and local sales and use taxes to the State of Arkansas. Provide such remote sellers sold and delivered tangible personal property, taxable services, a digital code, or specified digital products exceeding one hundred thousand dollars ($100,000) or two hundred (200) transactions in Arkansas.

Again, there are two ways in which you can file sales tax returns in Arkansas:

1. The first way is to file your sales tax returns online through the Arkansas Taxpayer Access Point (ATAP). ATAP is a web-based service that allows taxpayers, or their designated representatives, online access to their tax accounts and related information. It is available for most taxes administered by the Revenue Division. As a taxpayer, you get secure access to your tax accounts 24 hours a day, 7 days a week and you will be able to perform a host of functions including filing sales tax returns.

2. The second way to file sales tax returns is to mail your returns using the Form ET-1. To file this way, you must contact the Arkansas Department of Finance and Administration at 501-682-7104 and a Form ET-1 will be mailed to you. Here are instructions for filling out Arkansas Sales Tax Form ET-1.

5. California

As a retailer engaged in business in California, you must register with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) to pay the state’s sales tax. Sales tax in California applies to all retail sales of goods and merchandise except those sales that are specifically exempted by law.

The Sales Tax rate in a specific location in California comprises three parts: the state tax rate, the local tax rate, and any district tax rate that may be in effect.

Now, there are two ways in which you can file your sales tax return in California.

1. You can file your sales tax return online with the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration (CDTFA) at CDTFA online service. When you file your return online with the CDTFA, the system calculates the sales tax due based on the sales and deduction information you enter.

Once you complete and transmit your return to CDTFA, the return is automatically posted to your online account at CDTFA. You can even view your previously filed online returns, file amendments, file your return early, and set a future date to make your payment, as long as the payment is made before the due date of the return.

2. The second way to file your sales tax returns is to send Form CDTFA-401-A, which is the State, Local, and District Sales and Use Tax Return via email to CDTFA. Once you complete this form, mail it to the California Department of Tax and Fee Administration at the following address along with a paper check and payment voucher:

CALIFORNIA DEPARTMENT OF TAX AND FEE ADMINISTRATION
PO BOX 942879
SACRAMENTO CA 94279-8062

In case you make sales only within the district where your business is located and claim few tax exemptions or adjustments, you can file the simplified return in Form CDTFA -401-EZ if you qualify.

6. Colorado

Retailers must file a sales tax return in Colorado for every filing period, even if they did not make any sales during the period and had no tax as due. Typically, they must file returns on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis.

There are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns:

1. The first method is to file your tax returns online. The Colorado Department of Revenue provides you with multiple electronic filing options that you may use as an alternative to filing paper returns.

a. Revenue Online

The first electronic method through which you can file your sales tax returns is through Revenue Online. Revenue Online is an online portal where you need to create an account to file your sales tax return. If you have more than one business location, you must file a separate return in Revenue Online for each location.

b. Sales and Use Tax System (SUTS)

The SUTS portal allows you as a retailer to file retail sales tax returns for state, state-collected, and participating home-rule self-collecting taxation jurisdictions in one place. To file your returns, you must create a SUTS user ID and connect your Colorado Sales Tax account within the SUTS platform to file and pay sales tax through SUTS. The SUTS portal can be accessed at Tax.Colorado.gov/SUTS.

c. XML Filing

As a retailer, you can even file returns electronically in an XML (Extensible Markup Language) format using any of the approved software options listed online at Tax.Colorado.gov/software-developers-sales-tax. There is no need for you to obtain any special approval from the Department to file using an approved software option.

d. Spreadsheet Filing

As a retailer, you can even file returns electronically using an approved Microsoft Excel spreadsheet. But before filing returns with an Excel spreadsheet, you first must obtain approval from the Department. Information can be found online at Tax.Colorado.gov/sales-tax-spreadsheet-filing.

2. The second way to file your sales tax returns is to fill out Form DR-0100, sign, date, and mail
the return, along with their payment to the following address:

Colorado Department of Revenue
Denver CO 80261-0013

Note that if you file a paper return, you can mail a paper check with the return to pay the tax reported on the return. But you must write “Sales Tax,” the account number, and the filing period on any paper check remitted to pay sales tax to ensure proper crediting of their account.

7. Connecticut

If you engage in the sale, rental, or lease of goods; sale of a taxable service; or operating a hotel, motel, lodging house, or bed and breakfast establishment in Connecticut, in such a case, you must obtain a Sales and Use Tax Permit from Department of Revenue Services (DRS) in Connecticut.

You must obtain a Sales and Use Tax Permit from DRS if you are engaged in selling at a flea market, craft show, trade show, antique show, fair, etc. in Connecticut even for s single day. Furthermore, you must display the permit prominently at your booth or table.

Individuals, corporations, partnerships, and all other business entities making sales in the state of Connecticut are required to obtain a Sales and Use Tax Permit from DRS. This is regardless of the number of sales they make or the amount of tax they collect. However, anyone who is not engaged in the business of selling tangible personal property or taxable services and makes casual sales or isolated sales, that are infrequent sales and are nonrecurring, is not required to obtain the permit.

There are two ways in which you can file sales tax returns in Connecticut:

1. The first way is to file your sales tax returns online through myconneCT. myconneCT is the new Connecticut Department of Revenue Services (DRS) online portal to file tax returns, make payments, and view your filing history. You must complete and file Form OS‑114 to report all sales activity in Connecticut, even if you didn’t make any sales or had no tax as due. You must report both taxable and nontaxable sales as per your monthly, quarterly, or annual filing frequency assigned by the Department of Revenue Services (DRS).

2. The second way through which you can file your sales tax returns in Connecticut is by mailing Form OS-114 along with a paper check to the Department of Revenue Services (DRS) at the following address:

Department of Revenue Services
State of Connecticut
PO Box 5030
Hartford CT 06102-5030

8. District of Columbia

If as a vendor you have made any sale at retail that is taxable under the provisions of District of Columbia (DC) Official Code §47-2001 et seq., you must file a return with the Office of Tax and Revenue (OTR).

Such a return shall showcase your business’ total gross proceeds of the vendor’s for the year for which you are filing the return; the gross receipts of business upon which the tax is computed; the amount of tax for which you are liable and such other information that is deemed necessary for the computation and collection of the tax.

You must file an annual return in Form FR-800A if your sales and use tax liability is less than or equal to $200 per period. Then, you must file a quarterly return in Form FR-800Q if your sales and use tax liability is greater than or equal to $201 and less than or equal to $1200 per period. Finally, you must file a monthly return in Form FR-800M if your sales and use tax liability is greater than or equal to $1201 per period.

However, if the amount of your payment due for a period exceeds $5,000, you shall pay electronically.

Now, there are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns to the Office of Tax and Revenue (OTR).

1. The first way is to file your return online at MyTax DC. You need to create a MyTax.DC.gov account by clicking Sign-Up. Here is the step-by-step guide that will help you file your sales tax return at the MyTax DC portal.

2. The second way to file your sales tax returns is to fill out Form FR-800A, FR-800M, and FR-800Q manually and send it through mail to the OTR at the following address:

Office of Tax and Revenue
PO Box 96384
Washington, DC 20090-6384

Alan Chen, CPA at Freecashflow.io, helping eCommerce businesses with their tax and accounting

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9. Florida

In Florida, each sale, admission, storage, or rental is taxable, unless the State of Florida exempts the transaction. Thus, as a retailer, you must add the sales tax to the price of taxable goods or services that you sell and deliver in Florida and collect such a tax from the purchaser at the time of sale.

So, you must first find out if your business activity or products will be subject to sales and use tax before you start your business in Florida. If the business activity that you engage in Florida is subject to sales tax, then you must register to collect sales tax or pay use tax.

With effect from July 1, 2021, Florida law requires businesses making remote sales into the State of Florida to collect and electronically remit sales and use tax, including any applicable discretionary sales surtax on those transactions. Provided the business has made taxable remote sales of over $100,000 over the previous calendar year.

Note that sales and use tax is generally reported on the Sales and Use Tax Return, Form DR-15. There are two ways in which you can file this return.

1. The first way is to file online at the State of Florida Department of Revenue portal https://ritx-fl-sales.bswa.net/. You can file returns, pay sales, and use tax using the Department’s website or purchase software from a software vendor. Read the instructions in Form DR-15 N mentioned in the next point.

2. The second way to file your returns is to fill out Form DR-15 manually and mail it to the Florida Department of Revenue along with a check or money order at the following address:

Florida Department of Revenue
5050 W Tennessee Street
Tallahassee, FL 32399-0120

Here is a complete guide (DR-15N) on how to fill out Form DR-15. Read the instructions carefully before filling out the form.

10. Georgia

Once you determine that you have a nexus in Georgia, you need to register for a sales tax permit with the Georgia Department Of Revenue (DOR). You can do this online through the Georgia Tax Center (GTC) on Georgia’s DOR website.

You must file form CRF-002 to register to register your business account with the Department of Revenue Online Through the Georgia Tax Center.

After obtaining the sales tax permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax rate on taxable sales. Though Georgia’s statewide sales tax rate is 4%, local jurisdictions may impose additional sales taxes as Georgia has both state and local sales tax rates. Thus, the total rate is a combination of the state rate and any applicable local rates. You must ensure that you collect the correct rate based on the buyer’s location.

There are two ways in which you can file this return.

1. The first method to file sales and use tax returns in Georgia is to file them electronically through the Georgia Tax Center. You must file and pay electronically if you owe more than $500.00 in connection with any return, report, or other document about sales tax or use tax. Also, you are required to file this return with the Department even if some payments for those tax types subsequently fall below $500.00.

2. The second way to file tax returns in Georgia is to file Form ST-3 physically in case you are not required to file electronically and choose to file a paper return.

3. Typically, the tax returns in Georgia become due every month. Accordingly, you as a taxpayer must file your sales tax returns no later than the 20th day of the month following the period being reported. However, you can submit a written request to change your sales tax filing frequency.

11. Hawaii

Hawaii does not have a traditional sales tax; instead, it has the General Excise Tax (GET).

GET is a broad-based tax that applies to virtually all business activities in the State. The GET is levied on gross receipts that persons (individuals, corporations, partnerships, or other entities) derive from their business activities, with no deductions for business expenses such as materials, labor, travel, office supplies, or other costs of doing business.

The GET is not a sales tax. Unlike sales taxes found in other states, the legal incidence of the tax is on the business and not on the customer. Whether the business passes the tax on to the customer is a matter of private agreement. A business is not required to separately state an amount of the sales price representing a GET pass-on, but if the tax is passed on, it becomes part of the taxable gross receipts of the business. Also, unlike most sales taxes, the GET is levied on the gross income of all types of business activity, unless specifically exempted by law. Sales taxes, on the other hand, typically are levied only on sales of tangible personal property and only at the retail level.

If you meet the requirements, you need to register for a GET license with the Hawaii Department of Taxation. You can do this online through the Hawaii Tax Online (HTO) system.

To apply for the GET license, you must register online through the DOTAX website at Hawaii Tax Online. The GET is applied to all business activities in Hawaii, including sales of goods and services. It is not just a tax on the final sale to consumers; it applies at various stages of the business process.

After obtaining the GET license, you are required to collect the appropriate tax on your business activities.

The rate is generally 0.15% for Insurance Commission, 0.5% for Wholesaling, Manufacturing, Producing, Wholesale Services, and Use Tax on Imports For Resale, and 4% for all others. The county governments are authorized to adopt a county surcharge on state GET at the 4% rate. However, activities with 0.5% and 0.15% rates do not apply for county surcharge.

The following counties have adopted a county surcharge:

  • City and County of Honolulu: 0.5% effective January 1, 2007 to December 31, 2030.
  • County of Kauai: 0.5% effective January 1, 2019 to December 31, 2030.
  • County of Hawaii: 0.25% effective from January 1, 2019, to December 31, 2019, and 0.5% from January 1, 2020 – December 31, 2030.
  • County of Maui: 0.5% is effective January 1, 2024, to December 31, 2030.

Furthermore, GET must be reported on periodic returns in Form G-45 on a monthly, quarterly, or semiannual basis and are due on the 20th day of the month after the close of each period. To report GET annually, you must file Form G-49. Form G-49 must be filed by the 20th day of the fourth month following the close of the tax year. You must file your returns electronically at Hawaii Tax Online.

The frequency you file depends on the amount of GET your business has to pay during the year.

  • You must file monthly if you will pay more than $4,000 in GET per year.
  • You may file quarterly if you will pay $4,000 or less in GET per year.
  • You may file semiannually if you will pay $2,000 or less in GET per year.

12. Idaho

If you have a sales tax nexus in Idaho, you need to register for a seller’s permit with the Idaho State Tax Commission. You can register online through the Taxpayer Access Point (TAP) on the Idaho State Tax Commission website.

Idaho imposes a state sales tax, as well as local option taxes that may apply in certain jurisdictions. The statewide sales tax rate is 6%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

After obtaining the seller’s permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. You must ensure that you collect the correct rate based on the buyer’s location, considering both state and local taxes.

Returns are due by the 20th of the month following the reporting period covered. However, the frequency of returns will depend upon the amount of sales tax you pay:

  • Most retailers file returns every month by the 20th day of the following month.
  • Retailers who owe less than $750 tax per quarter pay their taxes quarterly which are within 20 days after the end of the quarter.
  • If you’re a distributor or a wholesaler with only a few sales, you can apply to file returns and forward taxes every six months, or once per year. Accordingly, your taxes become due by July 20 and January 20 if you file semi-annual returns and by January 20 if you file annual returns.

There are two ways in which you can file returns with the Idaho State Commission:

Note that the Idaho State Commission will mail you a customized Form 85o before the due date. If you have a TAP account, you’ll also see your return there.

13. Illinois

Illinois imposes a state sales tax, as well as local sales taxes that may apply in specific jurisdictions. The state tax rate is 6.25%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Illinois, you need to register for a Certificate of Registration with the Illinois Department of Revenue. You can register online through the MyTax Illinois portal.

After obtaining the Certificate of Registration, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. You must ensure that you collect the correct rate based on the buyer’s location, considering both state and local taxes.

To file a sales tax return in Illinois, you can adopt any of the following two methods:

Typically, you must file this return, along with any payment you owe, on or before the 20th day of the month following the end of your reporting period.

However, the Department determines how often you must file a return based on your initial registration and annual liability. Filing requirements based on your average monthly liability are determined as follows:

  • If your average monthly liability is greater than $200, you must file monthly.
  • If your average monthly liability is between $50 and $200, you must file quarterly.
  • If your average monthly liability is less than $50, you must your returns annually.

14. Indiana

Indiana imposes a state sales tax, as well as a county income tax, and, in some cases, a local income tax. The state sales tax rate is 7%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Indiana, you need to register for a Registered Retail Merchant’s Certificate (RRMC) with the Indiana Department of Revenue. You can register online through the INBiz portal.

After obtaining the Registered Retail Merchant’s Certificate, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. Indiana businesses are typically required to file sales tax returns on a monthly or quarterly basis, depending on the volume of sales. You can file returns online through the INTIME portal.

15. Iowa

Iowa law imposes both a sales tax and a use tax. The rate for both is 6%, though an additional 1% is applied to most sales subject to sales tax, as many jurisdictions impose a local option sales tax.

Sales tax is imposed on the sales price of the sale of tangible personal property, specified digital products, or taxable services at the time the sale takes place. Furthermore, it is the responsibility of the seller of the goods or services to collect and remit sales tax to the Iowa Department of Revenue. The tax is imposed when the tangible personal property or specified digital product is delivered in Iowa or when the first use of a service occurs or potentially could occur, in Iowa.

Also, retailers that do not have any physical or economic nexus in Iowa, but make sales in Iowa, may collect and remit the use tax that would be due on behalf of their customers.

To start collecting sales tax in Iowa, retailers who sell taxable tangible personal property, services, and products in or into Iowa must obtain a sales and use tax permit. To obtain a permit, they can apply through the Department’s Business Registration System.

After obtaining the sales tax permit, the retailers are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. Furthermore, a sales and use tax permit holder is required to file a return on either a monthly or annual basis. The filing frequency will depend upon the following requirements:

  • Retailers must file seasonal returns if they make $1,200 or more in sales and use tax in four or fewer months per year.
  • Retailers must file monthly returns if they make $1,200 or more in sales and use tax per year.
  • Retailers must file monthly returns if they make less than $1,200 in sales and use tax a year.

Retailers must file Iowa sales and use tax returns electronically through GovConnectIowa.

16. Kansas

Kansas imposes a state sales tax, as well as local sales taxes that may apply in specific jurisdictions. The state sales tax rate is 6.5%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Kansas, you need to register for a sales tax account with the Kansas Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Kansas Department of Revenue Customer Service Center.

After obtaining the sales tax account, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. Furthermore, you are typically required to file sales tax returns on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis, depending on the volume of sales.

There are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns with the Kansas Department of Revenue:

  • The first method to file sales tax returns in Kansas is to do it electronically at the Kansas Department of Revenue website.
  • The second method to file sales tax returns in Kansas is to file them in paper form via mail. Tax filers who need to file sales tax returns in a single jurisdiction in Kansas must use Form ST-16. Further, the tax filers who need to file sales tax returns in multiple jurisdictions in Kansas must use Form ST-36. Tax filers can also use Form CT-9U for filing sales tax returns.

17. Kentucky

Kentucky imposes a state Sales and Use Tax. However, there are no local sales and use taxes in Kentucky.

Sales Tax in Kentucky is imposed on the gross receipts derived from retail sales of tangible personal property, digital property, and sales of certain services in Kentucky. The state sales tax rate is 6% in Kentucky and there are no additional sales taxes imposed by a city or county in Kentucky.

You may file electronically via Kentucky E-tax, or via a paper return issued by the department. The department mails a unique paper return to each account for each respective filing period. The return mailed by the department or a form from a preapproved forms provider must be used if filing by paper.

In Kentucky, businesses typically use the Kentucky Sales and Use Tax (Form 51A102) to file sales tax returns. This form is used to report the sales tax collected on taxable sales during a specific reporting period.

Kentucky businesses may be required to file sales tax returns on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis, depending on the volume of sales. Typically, a return is due each month, unless you are a quarterly or annual filer. The monthly return is due on the 20th of the following month. The Kentucky Department of Revenue determines the filing frequency based on your reported sales.

There are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns:

  • The first and preferred way to file a sales tax return with the Kentucky Department of Revenue is to file returns electronically at https://onestop.efile.ky.gov/efilelanding.html. But first, you need to link your business to your KBOS account. Once you link your business to the KBOS account, you can file taxes under the ‘Obligations’ tab in your KBOS account.
  • The second way to file sales tax returns in Kentucky is via paper form. If you registered with the Kentucky Department of Revenue through a paper application, then the Kentucky Department of Revenue will mail you a sales and use tax return based on your filing frequency. Note that only a limited number of forms providers have been approved to reproduce the Department of Revenue sales and use tax returns in a scannable format. Therefore, you must confirm with your forms provider that they are authorized to reproduce Kentucky sales and use tax returns. In Kentucky, businesses typically use the Kentucky Sales and Use Tax (Form 51A102) to file sales tax returns.

18. Louisiana

Louisiana imposes a state sales tax, as well as local sales taxes that may apply in specific jurisdictions. The state sales tax rate is 4.45%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Louisiana, you need to register for a sales tax account with the Louisiana Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Louisiana Taxpayer Access Point (LaTAP).

After obtaining the sales tax account, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. Depending on the type of license you have as a seller or whether you are a remote seller based in Louisiana, you can file sales tax returns in teh following three ways:

19. Maine

Maine imposes a state sales tax, and certain municipalities may have additional local option taxes. The state sales tax rate is 5.5%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Maine, you need to register for a sales tax account with the Maine Revenue Services. You can register online at the Maine Tax Portal. After obtaining the sales tax account, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales.

Then, you are typically required to file sales tax returns on a monthly or quarterly basis, depending on the volume of sales. However, the following criteria are applicable for determining the frequency of your sales tax returns filing in Maine:

  • You must file a monthly tax return if you have an average tax liability of $600 or more per month.
  • You must file quarterly returns if you have an average tax liability of $100.00-$599.99 per month.
  • You must file semi-annual returns if you have an average tax liability of less than $100 per month.
  • You must file an annual return if you have an average tax liability of less than $50 per year.

Tax returns are due on the 15th day of the month following your reporting period end date. There are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns in Maine.

  • You can file online through the Maine Tax Portal.
  • You can file by mail using Form ST-7.

20. Maryland

In Maryland, the sales tax is collected on the sale of goods and on the sale of alcoholic beverages. A 6% sales tax rate is charged on the sale of goods whereas a sales tax rate of 9% is charged on the sale of alcoholic beverages.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Maryland, you need to register for a Sales and Use Tax License with the Maryland Comptroller. You can register online through the Maryland Business Express website.

There are two ways in which you can file sales tax returns in Maryland:

  • The first method is to file your returns in paper form. Note that the Comptroller of Maryland no longer automatically sends you a paper coupon booklet for Sales and Use Tax Returns. If you need paper forms (Form SUT202) mailed to you, please call 410-260-7951 from Central Maryland, or 1-800-638-2937, outside the Baltimore metropolitan area. You can even request the Comptroller by e-mailing IwantmySUTcoupons@marylandtaxes.gov or you can mail your request to the Comptroller of Maryland Revenue Administration Division P.O. Box 1829 Annapolis, MD, 21404.
  • The second method to file sales tax returns in Maryland is to file returns electronically at the Comptroller of Maryland’s website through the bFile system.

21. Massachusetts

Massachusetts imposes a state sales tax, and certain local jurisdictions may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 6.25%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Massachusetts, you need to register for a Sales and Use Tax Registration with the Massachusetts Department of Revenue. You can register online through the MassTaxConnect portal.

After you register with the Massachusetts DOR, you will receive a Sales and Use Tax Registration Certificate (Form ST-1) for each business location.

Further, as a seller in Massachusetts, you are typically required to file sales tax returns on a regular basis. The Massachusetts Department of Revenue determines the filing frequency based on your estimated annual liability. Refer to the following points to know your sales tax return filing frequency:

If you collect sales/use tax of $100 or less per year, then you must file an annual return on or before the 30th day following the year represented by the return completed with MassTaxConnect or Form ST-9.
If you collect sales/use tax from $101 up to $1,200 per year, then you must file a quarterly return on or before the 30th day following the quarter represented by the return completed with MassTaxConnect or Form ST-9 (for goods); Form STS (for services).
If you collect sales/use tax of $1,201 or more per year, then you must file a monthly return on or before the 30th day following the quarter represented by the return completed with MassTaxConnect or Form ST-9 (for goods); Form STS (for services).

There are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns with the Massachusetts DOR:

  • The first method is to file your returns electronically. But businesses with certain combined tax liabilities at or exceeding the $5,000 “combined tax threshold must file electronic returns with the Massachusetts Department Of Revenue through the MassTaxConnect Portal.
  • The second method to file sales tax returns in Massachusetts is to file in paper form in Form ST-9.

22. Michigan

Michigan imposes a state sales tax, and certain local jurisdictions may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 6%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Michigan, you need to register for a Sales Tax License with the Michigan Department of Treasury. You can register online through the Michigan Treasury Online (MTO) portal.

If you sell tangible personal property to the final consumer in Michigan, you must obtain a sales tax license. After obtaining the Sales and Use Tax Permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales.

Then, you must file sales tax returns on a regular basis. The filing frequency is determined by the Michigan Department of Treasury based on your estimated annual liability. Sales, Use, and Withholding taxes are filed on a monthly, quarterly or annual basis. A filing frequency will be assigned by the Department upon a taxpayer’s estimated level of activity. After the first tax year of filing, the frequency is determined by a taxpayer’s previous tax liability.

The monthly returns are due for filing on or before the 20th day of the following month on or before the 20th day of the month following the quarter end. The annual returns are due for filing on February 28 of the year following the tax year reported. The quarterly or monthly return is filed in Form 5080 and the annual return is filed in Form 5081.

Now, there are two ways in which you can file your sales tax returns:

23. Minnesota

Minnesota imposes a state sales tax, and certain local jurisdictions may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 6.875%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Minnesota, you need to register for a Sales and Use Tax Permit with the Minnesota Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Minnesota Department of Revenue website.

After obtaining the Sales and Use Tax Permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales.

Minnesota businesses are typically required to file sales tax returns on a regular basis. The filing frequency is determined by the Minnesota Department of Revenue based on your estimated annual liability. You can file returns online through the e-Services system.

24. Mississippi

Mississippi imposes a state sales tax, and certain municipalities may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 7%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Mississippi, you need to register for a Sales Tax Permit with the Mississippi Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Mississippi Taxpayer Access Point (TAP).

After obtaining the Sales Tax Permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales.

Mississippi businesses are typically required to file sales tax returns on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis, depending on the volume of sales. You can file returns online through the Mississippi Taxpayer Access Point (TAP).

25. Missouri

Missouri imposes a state sales tax, and certain local jurisdictions may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 4.225%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Missouri, you need to register for a Missouri Sales Tax License with the Missouri Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Missouri Business Portal.

After obtaining the Sales Tax License, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales. Ensure that you collect the correct rate based on the buyer’s location, considering both state and local taxes.

Missouri businesses are typically required to file sales tax returns on a regular basis. The filing frequency is determined by the Missouri Department of Revenue based on your estimated annual liability. You can file returns online through the Missouri Business Portal.

26. Nebraska

Nebraska imposes a state sales tax, and certain local jurisdictions may also have additional taxes. The state sales tax rate is 5.5%, but local jurisdictions may impose additional taxes.

If you have a sales tax nexus in Nebraska, you need to register for a Nebraska Sales Tax Permit with the Nebraska Department of Revenue. You can register online through the Nebraska Department of Revenue website.

After obtaining the Sales Tax Permit, you are required to collect the appropriate sales tax on taxable sales.

Nebraska businesses are typically required to file sales tax returns on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis, depending on the volume of sales. You can file returns online through the Nebraska Department of Revenue website.

27. Nevada

Sellers have two options to file and remit their New Jersey sales tax:

28. New Jersey

  • File online at the New Jersey Division of Taxation.
  • File by mail using Form ST-50.

29. New Mexico

It’s important to note that New Mexico does not have a sales tax. Instead, there is a gross receipts tax. This tax is imposed on any persons engaged in business in New Mexico. In almost every case, the person engaged in business passes the tax to the consumer either separately stated or as part of the selling price. More information can be found here. Sellers have two options to file and remit their New Mexico gross receipts tax:

  • File online using E-File.
  • File by mail using the Gross Receipts Tax Return.

30. New York

Sellers can file and remit their New York sales tax online at the New York Department of Taxation and Finance.

31. North Carolina

Sellers have two options to file and remit their North Carolina sales tax:

  • File online at the North Carolina Department of Revenue.
  • File by mail using this tax return form.

32. North Dakota

Sellers can file and remit their North Dakota sales tax online at the North Dakota Taxpayer Access Point (TAP).

33. Ohio

Sellers can file and remit their Ohio sales tax online at the Ohio Department of Taxation.

34. Oklahoma

Sellers have two options to file and remit their Oklahoma sales tax:

  • File online at OK Tap.
  • Use form STS-20002 to file by mail. Keep in mind that filers who pay more than $2,500 per month are required by Oklahoma to file online.

35. Pennsylvania

Sellers have two options to file and remit their Pennsylvania sales tax:

  • File online at the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue.
  • File over the telephone at 1-800-748-8299.

36. Rhode Island

Sellers have two options to file and remit their Rhode Island sales tax:

  • File online at the Rhode Island Division of Taxation.
  • Pay through the mail by using the Rhode Island Streamlined Sales Tax Return. Sellers must file and pay online if your tax liability in the previous year was $200 or more.

37. South Carolina

Sellers can file and remit their South Carolina sales online at the South Carolina Department of Revenue.

38. South Dakota

Sellers can file and remit their South Dakota sales tax online at the South Dakota Department of Revenue.

39. Tennessee

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Tennessee sales tax:

  • File online at the Tennessee Department of Revenue.
  • File by mail using Form SLS-450.

40. Texas

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Texas sales tax:

  • File online at the TxComptroller eSystems site.
  • File by mail using a Texas sales and use tax return.

41. Utah

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Utah sales tax:

  • File online at the Utah Taxpayer Access Point (TAP).
  • Sellers can also choose to file by mail. After a sales tax license has been issued, the Tax Commission will mail a personalized return to each seller, unless the seller has elected to not receive paper returns. If a seller does not receive a paper return, it is the seller’s responsibility to obtain blank forms, file all appropriate return forms, and remit taxes by the due date. All the relevant forms are listed on the state website.

42. Vermont

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Vermont sales tax:

  • File online using myVTax portal.
  • File by mail and send in a payment to: Vermont Department of Taxes PO Box 1779, Montpelier, VT 05601-1779.

43. Virginia

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Virginia sales tax:

  • File and remit through the Virginia Department of Taxation’s VATAX Online Service for Business.
  • File by mail using Form ST-8 (for out-of-state sellers) or ST-9 (for in-state sellers with one location).

44. Washington

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their Washington sales tax:

  • File online at the Washington Department of Revenue.
  • You can use various forms to file and pay through the mail.

45. West Virginia

Sellers have two options for filing and remitting their West Virginia sales tax:

  • File online at MyTaxes.
  • File by mail using Form CST200CU.

46. Wisconsin

Sellers have two options to file and remit their Wisconsin sales tax:

  • File online at the Wisconsin Department of Revenue.
  • File by mail using Form ST-12.

47. Wyoming

Sellers have two options to file and remit their Wyoming sales tax:

  • File online by using the Wyoming Internet Filing System for Businesses (WYIFS).
  • File by mail using Form 41-1.

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Alan Chen, CPA at Freecashflow.io, helping eCommerce businesses with their tax and accounting

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