E911 Tax Rates Increase, Apply to VoIP Phone Services Jan. 1

OLYMPIA, Nov. 16, 2010 – On January 1, 2011, the state enhanced 911 (E911) tax will increase and extend to interconnected Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) phone service. Most counties will also raise the county E911 tax and apply that tax to VoIP lines.

Substitute Senate Bill 6846 passed in the 2010 legislative session and authorized the following:

  • A five-cent increase of the state E911 tax, to 25 cents per line a month.
  • A 20-cent increase of the county E911 tax, to a maximum of 70 cents per line a month. 
  • The extension of the E911 taxes to interconnected VoIP phone services. The taxes already apply to landlines and cell phones.

Only Clark and Yakima counties are not applying the full increase to the county E911 taxes, charging 50 cents instead of 70 cents. Yakima is not applying the tax to VoIP services.

The legislation also directs the state Department of Revenue to administer the county tax beginning Jan. 1, 2011.  Subscribers will continue to pay both the state and county E911 taxes to telephone service providers. Telephone service providers will remit both taxes to the Department.

The tax applies only to the number of VoIP lines on an account that are capable of simultaneous unrestricted outward calling to the public switched telephone network.

VoIP is defined as a service that:

  • Enables real-time, two-way voice communications;
  • Requires a broadband connection from the user's location;
  • Requires Internet protocol-compatible customer premises equipment (CPE); and
  • Permits users generally to receive calls that originate on the public switched telephone network and to terminate calls to the public switched telephone network.

More information on the change is available in our Special Notice or by calling 1-800-647-7706.

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More information

Contact:
Media information
(360) 534-1602
KimS@dor.wa.gov

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