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Guide To 2011 Back To School Tax Holiday

July 20, 2011 2:44 PM

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(Source: AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

(Source: AP Photo/Paul Sakuma)

1053638 Guide To 2011 Back To School Tax Holiday
With the start of the new school year just around the corner, it’s likely that you’re already thinking about all that back to school shopping. If you are, you may want to hold off hitting the stores for a bit longer. You can save big bucks during this year’s Back To School Sales Tax Holiday courtesy of the state.

689000 Guide To 2011 Back To School Tax Holiday

When Is The Tax Holiday?

The tax holiday will be in effect throughout all of Florida from 12:01 a.m. on Friday August 12th until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, August 14th. The only places that will continue to tax regularly are theme parks, airports and “public lodging establishments.”

1016414 Guide To 2011 Back To School Tax Holiday

Savings

What can you save on?
The tax holiday exempts shoppers from sales tax as well as any other local option taxes.

  • The holiday is only for clothing, shoes and certain accessories, all which need to sell for $75 or less.
  • Not all items are exempt.
  • Articles that are normally sold as one item can’t be broken apart to get the exemption. So, a pair of shoes costing $80 can’t be split to get each for $40 and get the exemption.
    The exemption doesn’t include watches, watchbands, jewelry, umbrellas, handkerchiefs, or sporting equipment.
  • The exemption doesn’t include watches, watchbands, jewelry, umbrellas, handkerchiefs, or sporting equipment.
  • School supplies $15 or less are exempt including: writing utensils, binders and folders, paper, scissors, protractors, and calculators.

Click here for a full-list of the items that are taxable and those that are not.

939015 Guide To 2011 Back To School Tax Holiday

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the rules?
There’s no limit on how much you can spend in total, only on how much each individual item can cost in order to be tax-free. Also, you can buy exempt and non-exempt items at the same time and the holiday will still apply to qualifying items.

Does the $75 or less tax exemption apply to the first $75 of an item of clothing being purchased? In other words, if the selling price of a clothing item is $80, is the first $75 exempt from sales tax?
No. The tax exemption applies to items selling for $75 or less. If an item sells for more than $75 ($80 in this example), tax is due on the entire selling price.

Is there a limit on the number of items I may purchase tax‐exempt during the three‐day tax holiday?
No. The exemption is based on the sales price of the item, not the total invoice amount. Each eligible item of clothing with a selling price of $75 or less, and each eligible school supply item with a selling price of $15 or less, bought during the three‐day tax holiday period, is exempt from sales tax.

What about sales over the Internet?
Tax-exempt items purchased by mail order will qualify for the exmption if the order is accepted by the company during the exemption period for immediate shipment.

How is this year’s tax holiday different than last years?
No tax is due on certain clothing, footwear, and accessories selling for $75 or less.
No tax is due on certain school supplies selling for $15 or less.
Books are NOT tax-exempt.

Who determines what items are taxable and which ones are not?
The governor and the Florida Legislature determine what items are on and off the list.

What about coupons?
Manufacturer’s coupons do not reduce the sales price of an item. Therefore, a manufacturer’s coupon can’t be used to reduce the selling price of an eligible item of clothing to $75 or less or a school supply item of $15 or less. Tax is due on the total consideration received by the store for the sale of merchandise. Tax is due on the total consideration received by the store for the sale of merchandise.

How do I proportionally allocate shipping charges between the items ordered on a mail order sale?
To proportionally allocate the shipping charge, the amount of each item should be divided by the total amount of the items ordered to obtain the percentage that each item bears to the total order. Then multiply the total shipping charge by the percentage for each item to determine the amount of the shipping charge applicable to that item.

The shipping charge for each item must be separately stated on the invoice to the customer. The shipping charge is part of the selling price when determining if an item meets the tax-exempt threshold.

For example, a customer orders a $75 dress and a $25 shirt, for a total of $100. The shipping charge is $10. Example: $25 / $100 = 25% (25 divided by 100 equals 25%). Therefore, 25% or $2.50 of the shipping charge is allocated to the shirt, and included as part of the selling price of the shirt ($27.50). The other 75% ($7.50) is included in the selling price of the dress, making the price of the dress $82.50, which would not qualify for the exemption.

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