Florida Sales Tax Guide for Businesses
- Sales Tax Rate
- Local Taxes
- Department of Revenue
- Tax Line
We wrote this guide for online sellers who want to know if they even have to bother with sales tax in Florida, and if so, how best to tackle the sales tax situation in the Sunshine State.
After reading this, you’ll know:
- Do you or don’t you need to collect Florida sales tax?
- Which customers do you collect from?
- How much do you collect?
- What do you do with all the sales tax you’ve collected?
- Way more than you probably ever wanted to know about Florida sales tax!
Do you have sales tax nexus in Florida?
Good news! You only have to begin thinking about Florida sales tax if you have sales tax nexus in Florida.
“Sales tax nexus” is just a fancy way of saying “significant presence” in a state.
Florida considers a seller to have sales tax nexus in the state if you have any of the following in the state:
- Ownership of property in the state.
- Sales of taxable items at retail.
- An employee present in the state.
- Repairs or alterations of tangible personal property.
- Rentals, leases, or licenses to use real property
- Rentals of short-term living accommodations
- Rental or lease of personal property
- Manufacturing or producing goods for sale at retail.
- Importing goods from any state or foreign country, for sale at retail or for use in the business or for pleasure.
- Providing taxable services (for example, investigative and crime protection services, interior nonresidential cleaning services, and nonresidential pest control services).
You can click here to read exactly what the Florida Department of Revenue (Florida’s taxing authority) has to say about what constitutes sales tax nexus in Florida.
Do you have sales tax nexus in Florida if you sell on FBA?
If you sell on Amazon FBA, you may have sales tax nexus in Florida. Storing physical products in a state can create sales tax nexus, and Florida is home to two Amazon Fulfillment Centers.
To determine whether or not you have items stored in an FBA warehouse in Florida, you can do one of two things:
- Login to Amazon Seller Central and pull your inventory report
- Sign up for a 30-day free trial of TaxJar and find out from where your Amazon inventory ships with our Amazon badge feature
You may find that your inventory is stored in one or all of Florida’s Amazon fulfillment centers in this list:
|Warehouse Code||Address||County||Tax Rate|
|TPA1||3350 Laurel Ridge Ave. Ruskin, FL 33570||Hillsborough||7%|
|TPA2||1760 County Line Rd. Lakeland, FL, 33811||Polk||7%|
Is what you’re selling even taxable?
You’ve probably read this far because you realized you have sales tax nexus in Florida. Your next step is to determine if what you’re selling is even taxable.
Services in Florida are generally not taxable. So if you’re an event planner or a car stereo technician, you’re in luck and you don’t have to worry about sales tax. But watch out – if the service you provide includes creating or repairing a product, you may have to deal with the sales tax on products.
Tangible products are taxable in Florida , with a few exceptions. These exceptions include groceries, cosmetics, common household remedies, seeds and fertilizer, and prosthetic or orthopedic instruments.
So if you sell car parts, then charge sales tax to your Florida customers.
But if you’re an accountant, don’t charge sales tax to your Florida customers.
If you have sales tax nexus in Florida and your products are taxable, your next step is to register for a sales tax permit.
How to Register for a Sales Tax Permit in Florida
Sellers with sales tax nexus in Florida must apply for a Florida sales tax permit.
Don’t skip this step! Many states consider it unlawful to collect sales tax in their name without a permit. Go here for more on how to register for a sales tax permit in Florida.
How to Collect Sales Tax in Florida
So you’ve determined that you have sales tax nexus in Florida and what you’re selling is taxable. And you’re all set and registered for your Florida sales tax permit(s).
The next step is to determine how much sales tax to collect.
The sales tax rate you collect in Florida depends on whether you are based in Florida or out-of-state.
How to Collect Sales Tax in Florida if You are Based in Florida
Florida is a destination-based sales tax state. So if you live in Florida, collect sales tax at the sales tax rate of the address where you ship your product.
Example: You live in Fort Walton Beach FL 32548 and sell a product to your customer in Tampa, FL 33601. You would charge the sales tax rate in Tampa of 7% on your product.
How to Collect Sales Tax in Florida if you are Not Based in Florida
Florida wants sellers who made a sale into Florida from outside the state to charge sales tax based on the destination of the buyer.
Example: You live in Louisiana, but have nexus in Florida. You sell a product to a customer in Miami, FL 33133. You would charge the state rate of 6% with a local tax rate of 1% for a total of 7% sales tax on the sale.
What are the Amazon sales tax settings for Florida?
If you are an Amazon pro seller and use Amazon to collect sales tax, be sure you have your Florida sales tax settings entered correctly. Find step-by-step instructions for setting up your Amazon sales tax settings here.
|If you are a…||State tax||County tax||City tax||District tax||Custom rate||Is shipping taxable?||Is gift wrapping taxable?|
|Seller living in Florida||X||X||X||X||N/A||Yes||Yes|
|Seller living outside of Florida||X||X||X||X||N/A||Yes||Yes|
Should you collect sales tax on shipping charges in Florida?
If you sell online you will most likely be required to charge sales tax on shipping charges in Florida.
Read a full explanation of sales tax on shipping in Florida here.
|9||West Palm Beach||354,787||Palm Beach||6.00%|
|19||Boca Raton||230,432||Palm Beach||6.00%|
|20||Lake Worth||230,305||Palm Beach||6.00%|
Top 20 most populous cities in Florida and their sales tax rates
When are Florida Sales Tax Returns Due?
Florida sales tax returns are always due the 20th of the month following the reporting period. You’ll be assigned a sales tax filing frequency when you apply for your Florida sales tax permit.
To break it down:
2016 Florida Monthly Sales Tax Filing Due Dates
|Taxable Period||Due Date|
|January||February 22, 2016*|
|February||March 21, 2016*|
|March||April 20, 2016|
|April||May 20, 2016|
|May||June 20, 2016|
|June||July 20, 2016|
|July||August 22, 2016*|
|August||September 20, 2016|
|September||October 20, 2016|
|October||November 21, 2016*|
|November||December 20, 2016|
|December||January 20, 2017|
*indicates a due date pushed back due to a weekend or holiday
2016 Florida Quarterly Sales Tax Filing Due Dates
|Taxable Period||Due Date|
|Q1 (Jan - Mar)||April 20, 2016|
|Q2 (Apr - Jun)||July 20, 2016|
|Q3 (Jul - Sep)||October 20, 2016|
|Q4 (Oct - Dec)||January 20, 2017|
2016 Florida Annual Sales Tax Filing Due Date
|Taxable Period||Due Date|
|Year 2016||January 20, 2017|
Click here for a chart of Florida sales tax filing due dates in 2016.
How to File Sales Tax in Florida
When it comes time to file sales tax in Florida you must do three things:
- Calculate how much sales tax you owe
- File a sales tax return
- Make a payment
We’ll walk you through these steps.
How to Calculate How Much Sales Tax You Owe in Florida
Calculating how much sales tax you should remit to the state of Florida is easy with TaxJar’s Florida sales tax report.
All you do is connect the channels through which you sell – including Amazon, eBay, Shopify, Square and more – and we’ll calculate exactly how much sales tax you collected. All the information you need to file your Florida sales tax return will be waiting for you in TaxJar. All you have to do is login!
How to File and Pay Sales Tax in Florida
You have three options for filing and paying your Florida sales tax:
File online: File online at the Florida Department of Revenue. You can remit your payment through their online system. Click here for detailed guide on how to file online.
File by mail: You can use Form DR-15 and file and pay through the mail.
AutoFile: Let TaxJar file your sales tax for you. We take care of the payments, too. You’ll never have to worry about spreadsheets, calculations or filling out complex sales tax returns.
This video will walk you through manually filing your Florida sales tax return using your TaxJar report:
Other Facts You Should Know about Florida Sales Tax Filing
There are a few more things you should know about sales tax in Florida:
- Late Filing Penalty- 10% of any unpaid tax if failure is up to 30 days, and an additional 10% of any unpaid tax for each additional 30 days, or fraction thereof, not to exceed 50%
Other penalties for fraud or serial offenses include higher penalties and even criminal charges.
Florida requires that any seller with a sales tax permit file a sales tax return on your due date even if you don’t have any sales tax to report or pay. They will charge a late fee ofa minimum of $50 if 10% of Line 10 is less than $50 or 10% of the amount due on Line 10. Click here for a list of states that require zero sales tax returns.
Many states understand that collecting sales tax is a difficult burden on merchants, and will provide a discount to help alleviate some of this burden. In Florida if you electronically file (e-file) your return and electronically pay (e-pay) tax timely, you are entitled to receive a collection allowance. The collection allowance is 2.5 percent (0.025 of the first $1,200 of the Amount Due (Line 10), not to exceed $30.
Only dealers who e-file and e-pay timely may receive a collection allowance, and may choose to donate the allowance to the Educational Enhancement Trust Fund. Dealers who file their returns or make payments by a method other than electronic means are not entitled to a collection allowance.Click here for more about state sales tax discounts.
Pro Tip: If you use TaxJar’s AutoFile feature to file your sales tax returns we automatically take this discount for you.
And that’s it. You’ve mastered Florida sales tax filing! Now that sales tax is out of the way, you can get back to what you do best – running your business.
Florida Sales Tax Resources
For more about Florida sales tax, check out the Florida section of the TaxJar blog.