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North Dakota Sales Tax Guide for Businesses

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We wrote this guide for online sellers who want to know if they even have to bother with sales tax in North Dakota, and if so, how best to tackle the sales tax situation in the Peace Garden State.

After reading this, you’ll know:

  • Do you or don’t you need to collect North Dakota 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 North Dakota sales tax!

Do you have sales tax nexus in North Dakota?

Good news! You only have to begin thinking about North Dakota sales tax if you have sales tax nexus in North Dakota.

“Sales tax nexus” is just a fancy way of saying “significant presence” in a state.

North Dakota considers a seller to have sales tax nexus in the state if you have any of the following in the state:

  • A temporary or permanent office or place of business
  • An employee or agent
  • Leasing or renting tangible personal property

You can click here to read exactly what the North Dakota Department of Revenue (North Dakota’s taxing authority) has to say about what constitutes sales tax nexus in North Dakota (p. 2).

Is what you’re selling even taxable?

You’ve probably read this far because you realized you have sales tax nexus in North Dakota. Your next step is to determine if what you’re selling is even taxable.

Tangible products are taxable in North Dakota , with a few exceptions. These exceptions include certain groceries, prescription medicine and medical devices, and machinery and chemicals used in agriculture.

Many services are also taxable with some exceptions. Check out this document for information about which services are taxable and tax exempt in North Dakota.

If you have sales tax nexus in North Dakota and your products (or services) are taxable, your next step is to register for a sales tax permit.

How to Register for a Sales Tax Permit in North Dakota

Sellers with sales tax nexus in North Dakota must apply for a North Dakota 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 North Dakota.

How to Collect Sales Tax in North Dakota

So you’ve determined that you have sales tax nexus in North Dakota and what you’re selling is taxable. And you’re all set and registered for your North Dakota sales tax permit.

The next step is to determine how much sales tax to collect.

How to Collect Sales Tax in North Dakota

North Dakota is a destination-based sales tax state. So no matter if you live and run your business in North Dakota or live outside North Dakota but have nexus there, you would charge sales tax at the rate of your buyer’s ship-to location.

Example: You live and run your business in Fargo, ND where the sales tax rate is 7.5%, but you sell to a customer in Dickinson, ND. The sales tax rate in Dickinson is only 6.5%. You would charge your customer the 6.5% sales tax rate at their location.

You can look up your local sales tax rate by going to on your mobile device or look up any sales tax rate by zip code by going to with TaxJar’s Sales Tax Calculator.

Should you collect sales tax on shipping charges in North Dakota?

Shipping charges are generally taxable in North Dakota.

Read a full explanation of sales tax on shipping in North Dakota here.

Rank City Population County Total SalesTax
1 Fargo 118,523 Cass 5.50%
2 Bismarck 71,167 Burleigh 5.50%
3 Grand Forks 57,011 Grand Forks 5.00%
4 Minot 49,450 Ward 7.50%
5 West Fargo 33,597 Cass 5.50%
6 Williston 26,977 Williams 8.00%
7 Dickinson 23,765 Stark 5.00%
8 Mandan 21,382 Morton 5.50%
9 Jamestown 15,422 Stutsman 7.00%
10 Wahpeton 7,899 Richland 7.00%
11 Devils Lake 7,351 Ramsey 5.00%
12 Watford City 6,708 McKenzie 5.00%
13 Valley City 6,669 Barnes 5.00%
14 Minot AFB 5,890 Ward 5.50%
15 Grafton 4,243 Walsh 5.25%
16 Lincoln 3,519 Burleigh 5.50%
17 Beulah 3,393 Mercer 5.00%
18 Rugby 2,846 Pierce 5.00%
19 Stanley 2,721 Mountrail 5.00%
20 Grand Forks AFB 2,663 Grand Forks 5.00%

Caption: Top 20 Most Populous Cities in North Dakota and their Sales Tax Rates (June 2017)

When are North Dakota Sales Tax Returns Due?

When you file and pay North Dakota sales tax depends on two things: your assigned filing frequency and your state’s due dates.

How often will you file sales tax returns in North Dakota?

States assign you a filing frequency when you register for your sales tax permit. In most states, how often you file sales tax is based on the amount of sales tax you collect from buyers in the state.

In North Dakota, you will be required to file and remit sales tax either monthly, quarterly, semiannually or annually.

How often you are required to file sales tax in North Dakota follows this general rule:

Average Monthly Tax Liability Filing Frequency
$25,000.01 and up Monthly
$0 to $25,000.00 Quarterly
At state’s discretion Annually or Semiannually

North Dakota sales tax returns are always due the last day of the month following the reporting period. If the filing due date falls on a weekend or holiday, sales tax is generally due the next business day.

2017 North Dakota Monthly Sales Tax Filing Due Dates

Taxable Period Due Date
January February 28, 2017
February March 31, 2017
*March May 1, 2017*
April May 31, 2017
May June 30, 2017
June July 31, 2017
July August 31, 2017
*August October 2, 2017*
September October 31, 2017
October November 30, 2017
*November January 2, 2018*
December January 31, 2018

*indicates a due date pushed back due to a weekend or holiday

2017 North Dakota Quarterly Sales Tax Filing Due Dates

Taxable Period Due Date
*Q1 (Jan-March) May 1, 2017*
Q2 (April-June) July 31, 2017
Q3 (July-Sept) October 31, 2017
Q4 (Oct-Dec) January 31, 2018

*indicates a due date pushed back due to a weekend or holiday

2017 North Dakota Semiannual Sales Tax Filing Due Dates

| Taxable Period | Due Date | |————————-|——————| | Semiannual 1 (Jan-June) | July 31, 2017 | | Semiannual 2 (July-Dec) | January 31, 2018 |

2017 North Dakota Annual Sales Tax Filing Due Dates

Taxable Period Due Date
2017 January 31, 2018

Click here for more info on North Dakota sales tax filing due dates.

How to File Sales Tax in North Dakota

When it comes time to file sales tax in North Dakota you must do three things:

  1. Calculate how much sales tax you owe
  2. File a sales tax return
  3. Make a payment

We’ll walk you through these steps.

How to Calculate How Much Sales Tax You Owe in North Dakota

Calculating how much sales tax you should remit to the state of North Dakota is easy with TaxJar’s North Dakota 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 North Dakota sales tax return will be waiting for you in TaxJar. Start your 30-day free trial of TaxJar today!

How to File and Pay Sales Tax in North Dakota

You have two options for filing and paying your North Dakota sales tax:

Other Facts You Should Know about North Dakota Sales Tax Filing

There are a few more things you should know about sales tax in North Dakota:


  • Late Filing Penalty – Greater of 5% of tax due per month or fraction (maximum 25%) or $5.
  • Late Payment Penalty – Greater of 5% of tax due or $5.

Other penalties for fraud or serial offenses include higher penalties and even criminal charges.

“Zero returns”:

North Dakota 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. 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 North Dakota, a discount is available of 1.5% tax due. The maximum discount amount available is $93 per month.Click here for more about state sales tax discounts.

And that’s it. You’ve mastered North Dakota sales tax filing! Now that sales tax is out of the way, you can get back to what you do best – running your business.

North Dakota Sales Tax Resources

For more about North Dakota sales tax, check out the North Dakota section of the TaxJar blog.

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