Business owners -- whether they are based in Connecticut or elsewhere -- have a lot of tax concerns compared to the typical person. Not only do they have to worry about filing their own income and business taxes, they also have to worry about making sure they collect and pay appropriate sales tax. This week's column will be a quick overview of sales tax basics.
Taxes, taxes, taxes -- they are a part of life that no one can escape. Connecticut residents who are business owners have to pay a slew of taxes, including sales tax on the items that they sell. How exactly does sales tax filing work?
Just about anything can be bought online these days and usually at a cheaper price than what is offered in standard brick-and-mortar establishments. Did you know, though, that some of your online purchases may be subject to Connecticut sales tax even if the seller does not charge you sales tax at the time of purchase? This may not be true for everything you purchase online, but it is for any tobacco products you may buy.
When tax season rolls around, it can be tempting to be a little dishonest in the hopes of avoiding paying an arm and a leg in taxes. However, lying on tax returns or filing bogus returns are tax crimes. Those in Connecticut and elsewhere who are caught doing either of these things could face some serious penalties.
Amazon is one of the biggest online retailers in the world. Millions of people use the site to sell their own goods, and Amazon itself offers popular products at relatively low prices. For a long time, the company got away with not charging sales tax. In 2013, the state of Connecticut said no more. While the company itself may charge Connecticut residents sales tax, personal sellers have not been too great about it, leaving them and Amazon on the hook for quite a bit in unpaid taxes.
You are a business owner in Connecticut. You are doing the best you can to keep your company afloat all while following the state and federal rules that govern certain aspects of your business. Tax season rolls around and it is not until then that you realize you made a big sales tax mistake -- either on your own or because you received an audit notification. What can you do?