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If NC business mails fliers to VA does it need a VA permit or sales tax number?

Full Question: If I buy and sell produce at a North Carolina market, and have no location in Virginia, but send out mailers by the postal service or take orders via internet sales and deliver Christmas trees, fruits and vegetables to Virginia businesses, churches or a residence do I need a Virginia permit or sales tax number.

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Diane Yetter photoThe determination as to whether you are required to register to collect VA sales tax depends on the level of your activities in VA. This is referred to as "nexus". If all of your activities are conducted outside of VA and you never enter VA, then you would not be required to register to collect VA sales tax. However, in your question you indicate that you will be delivering product into VA, This can create nexus. In researching the VA provisions, they have a list of the activities that can create a tax collection responsibility. Any of the following conditions or activities in Virginia by an out-of-state or Virginia dealer will establish that the dealer has sufficient contact with the state to be required to register and collect the sales and use tax:
  • maintaining or having within Virginia, directly or through an agent or subsidiary, an office, warehouse, or place of business;
  • soliciting business by employees, independent contractors, or representatives;
  • in newspapers or other periodicals printed and published in Virginia, on billboards or posters, or through materials distributed by means other than U.S. Mail;
  • delivering tangible personal property more than 12 times per year other than by common carrier;
  • soliciting business on a continuous, regular, seasonal, or systematic basis through advertising that is broadcast or distributed from within the state;
  • soliciting business by mail, if done on a continuous, regular, seasonal, or systematic basis and if the dealer benefits from any financial or marketing activities in the state or benefits from the presence of authorized installation, servicing, or repair facilities;
  • being owned or controlled by the same interests that own or control a business in the state;
  • having a franchisee (or, licensee) registered and operating under the same trade name in the state; or
  • owning tangible personal property that is rented, leased, or offered, on approval, to a Virginia consumer. Sec. 58.1-612(C), Code ; 23 VAC 10-210-1090 )
As indicated above, delivering in something other than a common carrier more than 12 times in a year will create a collection responsibility. Assuming you do deliver more than 12 times in a year, you will be required to obtain a VA Tax permit and collect tax on all taxable sales. If you are selling at retail to consumers (which could include businesses that are not reselling your product), please be aware that food for human consumption (other than prepared hot foods sold for immediate consumption) are generally subject to a reduced rate of 2.5%. If you need assistance evaluating the components once you receive the details, we can assist you through our consulting services.

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