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Is the rental charge for portable toilets subject to sales tax?

No. The charges for providing the service of bringing a portable chemical toilets to a customer’s location for a period of take, maintaining the unit during the time it is at the customer’s location as required under state law, and then picking up the unit at the end of the agreement are taxed under the service and other activities classification of the B&O tax.

Because the owner of the portable toilet is required under state law to maintain the unit during the time it is at the customer’s location, this is not considered to be a true rental under WAC 458-20-211. For information on the owner’s routine maintenance requirements for portable toilets, see WAC 296-155-140.

The owner of the portable toilets must pay sales tax or use tax on each unit, because they are not re-renting the units to the customers. The owner of the units must also pay sales tax or use tax on the chemicals, toilet paper, and other supplies required to maintain the units.