Resources Law by State Missouri Sales Tax Rate

Missouri Sales Tax Rate

Missouri imposes a sales tax upon all sales of tangible personal property, as well as some "taxable services"; it also charges a use tax for the "privilege of storing, using or consuming within this state any article of tangible personal property."The state rate, including conservation and other taxes, is 4.225%, and counties, municipalities, and other political subdivisions charge their own taxes. Those additional local taxes combined with "community improvement district," "transportation development district," and "museum district" taxes can result in merchandise sales taxes in excess of 10%.The state sales tax rate on certain foods is 1.225%.

Missouri provides several exemptions from sales tax, such as purchases by charitable organizations or some common carriers (as opposed to "contract carriers"). Missouri also excludes some purchases from taxation on the grounds that such sales are not sales at retail; these include sales to political subdivisions.The Supreme Court of Missouri in August, 2009, ruled that when a sale is excluded from taxation - as opposed to exempt from taxation - the seller must self-accrue sales tax on its purchase of the goods and remit the tax on such purchases it made. This decision was reversed by two similar - but not identical - statutes added during the 2010 general assembly's regular session.

Although the purchaser is obligated to pay the tax, the seller is obligated to remit the tax, and when the seller fails to remit, the obligation to pay falls on him. As compensation for collecting and remitting taxes, and as an incentive to timely remit taxes, sellers may keep two percent of all taxes collected each period. There are two exceptions to the general rule that the seller must pay the sales tax when he or she fails to collect it. First, no sales tax is due upon the purchase of a motor vehicle that must be titled. Instead, the purchaser pays the tax directly to the Department of Revenue within one month of purchase. As long as the vehicle is taken out of state within that first month of purchased and titled elsewhere, no tax is due in Missouri. Second, if the purchaser presents an exemption certificate to the buyer at the time of sale, then the purchaser may be assessed taxes on the purchases if the certificate was issued in bad faith.

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