Have you purchased items without paying sales tax?
If you are a Washington resident, use tax is due if you purchased goods without paying sales tax.
Use tax notice from businesses
If you receive a letter from a business letting you know that you owe use tax, it is not a scam.
Beginning Jan. 1, 2018, if you are not charged sales tax on a non-exempt purchase delivered to your Washington address, businesses are required to send you an annual notice letting you know that you owe Washington use tax. The notice must be sent by Feb. 28, and businesses are also required to send a report of these sales to the Department of Revenue.
For more information, see our Marketplace Fairness webpage.
Do I need this letter when filing my federal income tax return?
The use tax you owe is to Washington state, so you do not need this letter when filing your federal income tax return, and you cannot pay it with your federal income tax.
How do I pay use tax?
You can pay the use tax due on untaxed purchases by filing a Consumer Use Tax Return using one of the following methods of reporting:
- Online return (no login required): use this if you do not have an account in My DOR.
By mail, using our Consumer Use Tax Return (Fill-in form, print and mail with check)
The tax rate and location code is generally based on your home address. Use our Tax Rate Lookup Tool (online) or Tax Rate Lookup App (mobile) to find the tax rate and location code for your address. You will need the location code for your tax return.
Note: You do not need to:
- Itemize purchases under $1,000. You should report purchases in a lump sum.
- Describe or identify what you purchased. The purchase amount and a generic description is sufficient.
When is use tax due?
You can pay use tax anytime (pay as you go), but you must pay by April 1 of the following year to avoid interest and penalties.
For example, for purchases you made in 2018, use tax is due by April 1, 2019.
Note: Business must mail annual use tax notices by Feb. 28. If you do not want to pay as you go, we recommend waiting until March 1 to file in case you receive multiple letters.
What exemptions are available?
Common exemptions include: