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Skip the sales tax this weekend

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tax free weekendGet ready for back to school–this year’s Sales Tax Holiday is this Friday through Sunday, Aug. 5 – 7.

As in previous years, the law exempts most clothing, footwear, school supplies and backpacks priced less than $100 from sales and use taxes, which could save shoppers about $8 on every $100 they spend.

All sales of qualifying items made during this weekend qualify for the exemption, including items sold online, or by telephone or mail. Shoppers can use layaway plans to take advantage of the sales tax holiday.

Clothing and Footwear

Retailers are not required to collect state and local sales or use tax on most footwear and clothing that are sold for less than $100 during the holiday.

The exemption does not apply to sales of special clothing or footwear that the manufacturer primarily designed for athletic activity or protective use. For example, golf cleats and football pads do not qualify for the exemption. Tennis shoes, jogging suits and swimsuits, however, are commonly worn for purposes other than athletic activity and thus qualify for the exemption.

The sales tax holiday exemption does not extend to rental of clothing or footwear; nor does it apply to alteration (including embroidery) or cleaning services performed on clothes and shoes. Additionally, tax is due on sales of accessories, including jewelry, handbags, purses, briefcases, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches and similar items.

Backpacks

Backpacks priced less than $100 sold for use by elementary and secondary students are exempt during the sales tax holiday. The exemption includes backpacks with wheels, provided they can also be worn on the back like a traditional backpack, and messenger bags.

The exemption does not include items that are reasonably defined as luggage, briefcases, athletic/duffle/gym bags, computer bags, purses or framed backpacks. Ten or fewer backpacks can be purchased tax-free at one time without providing an exemption certificate to the seller.

School Supplies

Texas families also get a sales tax break on most school supplies priced at less than $100 purchased for use by a student in an elementary or secondary school.

Purchases of School Supplies Using a Business Account

Persons buying qualifying school supplies during the holiday are not required to provide an exemption certificate – with one exception. If the purchaser is buying the items under a business account, the retailer must obtain an exemption certificate from the purchaser certifying that the items are purchased for use by an elementary or secondary school student. “Under a business account” means the purchaser is using a business credit card or business check rather than a personal credit card or personal check; being billed under a business account maintained at the retailer; or is using a business membership at a retailer that is membership based.

More information: http://comptroller.texas.gov/taxinfo/taxpubs/taxholiday/d/

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