Buyers who paid sales tax on bottled water in certain circumstances may request a refund of the sales tax directly from the Department of Revenue. To receive a refund, buyers must have bought the water because there is no other source of potable water and/or the buyer had a prescription.
Requesting a refund
To request a refund, buyers must have at least $25 in sales tax paid for eligible bottled water. Buyers may combine multiple purchases to reach the $25 threshold. The buyer must request the refund within four years of the end of the year in which the tax was paid.
To request a refund, submit the following documents:
- Application for Refund or Credit form
- Copies of receipts showing sales tax paid on bottled water
- Documentation (from the Department of Health or a laboratory) that your regular source of drinking water is not suitable for drinking, or
- Copy of a doctor’s prescription for bottled water
Mail your refund request to:
Washington State Department of Revenue
PO Box 47476
Olympia, WA 98504-7476
In February 2022, you realize you paid sales tax on cases of bottled water you purchased. You bought the water because your well is documented as unsafe for drinking. From your receipts, you found the following sales tax paid each year:
- 2017 - $5
- 2018 - $11
- 2019 - $12
- 2020 - $15
- 2021 - $13
In this case, you would be eligible to request the $51 in sales tax you paid in 2018-2021. The $5 tax paid in 2017 is beyond the refund claim period.
- Using the same information above, you could have filed for a refund in 2019 once you had paid a total of $25 in sales tax from 2017 to 2019. In 2021, you could file another refund request for sales tax paid in 2019 to 2021.
For more information
See our Special Notice on Bottled Water.