Are you purchasing goods that should be exempt, but sales tax is being charged?
Providing suppliers with a copy of your valid exemption certificate is key to qualifying for sales tax breaks. Without it suppliers are responsible for collecting sales tax on your purchases. Additionally, your exemption certificate must contain the correct information. An invalid exemption certificate can cause problems for both you as the purchaser as well as your supplier.
Which sales tax exemption certificate should you give to your suppliers to ensure you are correctly being charged (or not charged) tax? The state of Georgia offers multiple exemption certificates. Here’s an overview to help you select the right form.
ST-5 – This is Georgia’s general sales tax exemption certificate. It covers non-manufacturing exemptions from Georgia sales and use tax. This form can be used for purchasing items for resale.
ST-5M – This is Georgia’s exemption certificate specifically for manufacturers. This form is to be used by manufacturers who are registered in the state of Georgia.
ST-5M: Addendum for Energy exemption – In order to take advantage of the manufacturer’s energy exemption, some energy suppliers require that you provide them with this addendum in conjunction with your ST-5M.
MTC – This form is a blanket exemption certificate that is accepted in 38 states. If you, as a buyer, are located and registered in multiple states then this form can be very helpful and easy to use as a blanket form for multiple locations.
ST-5 SST – This is another blanket form that can cover multiple states.
Most of these forms are found on the Georgia Department of Revenue website. The MTC form is located on the Multistate Tax Commission website.
Remember, just because you have a valid exemption certificate, does NOT mean all your purchases are exempt. Georgia has many sales tax exemptions and rate reductions, each with very specific qualifications. And Georgia’s sales tax laws and regulations change. Stay well-informed and up to date on the state’s tax savings opportunities and you’ll help keep money in your company’s pockets.
Have you had problems with suppliers accepting an exemption certificate? Any recommendations to stay on top of Georgia’s sales tax laws and regulations?
Other recent “Georgia (GA)” posts by Lauren Stinson, CMI:
- Sales Tax on Labor: In Georgia, Not All is Created Equal
- A Review of Georgia's Sales Tax Exemption Certificates
- Georgia's New Rule for Itemization of Sales and Use Tax
- Georgia FBA Sellers: Your Sales Tax Registration Obligations
- Georgia DOR Is Making Big Changes to Direct Pay Permit Rules