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When are the Sales Tax Holidays in 2016?

by Jennifer Dunn

Tax Free Weekends 2016 Map

As consumers, we all love the chance to save a buck, and luckily many states give us that chance once or twice per year with sales tax holidays. Or you might know these as “tax free weekends,” even though many happen over more than a weekend!

Keep reading for a list of the sales tax holidays in 2016, and what to do about sales tax holidays if you sell online.

List of All Sales Tax Holidays in 2016

This list was updated July 19, 2016 

Alabama Sales Tax Holidays 2016

Local areas can elect to participate or not to participate in Alabama sales tax holidays. Click here for a list of Alabama cities that have elected to participate in the sales tax holiday.

February 26-28, 2016: Severe weather preparedness items that cost $60 or less are not taxed, which the exception of portable generators and power cords used to provide light or communications or preserve food in the event of a power outage, which are covered as long as they cost $1,000 or less.

August 5-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – clothing (not accessories or protective or recreational equipment) with sales price of $100 or less per item are tax exempt. Single purchases, with a sales price of $750 or less, of computers, computer software, and school computer equipment are tax exempt. Noncommercial purchases of school supplies, school art supplies, and school instructional materials with sales price of $50 or less per item are tax exempt. Noncommercial book purchases with sales price of $30 of less per book are tax exempt.

Alabama Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Arkansas Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 6-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Clothing items under $100 and clothing accessories or equipment under $50 are tax exempt. School art supplies, school instructional materials, and school supplies are tax exempt.

Arkansas Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Connecticut Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 21-27, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Clothing and footwear (with the exception of athletic or protective clothing or footwear, jewelry, handbags, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches, and similar items) that  cost less than $100 per item are tax exempt.

Connecticut Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Florida Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5-7, 2016: Clothing, footwear, wallets or bags less than $60; school supplies less than $15 per item

Florida Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Georgia Sales Tax Holidays 2016

July 30-31, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Clothing and footwear with a sale price of $100 or less per item (excluding accessories); noncommercial purchases of $1,000 or less of computers, computer components, and prewritten software; and noncommercial purchases of general school supplies priced at up to $20 per item are all tax exempt.

Sept 30-Oct 2, 2016: “Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday” – Purchases of Energy Star and WaterSense items $1500 or less are tax deductible.

Georgia Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Iowa Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5-6, 2106: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Clothing and footwear (with the exception of accessories, rentals, athletic or protective clothing and footwear) with sales price of less than $100 per item are tax exempt.

Iowa Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Louisiana Sales Tax Holidays 2016

(No longer in effect for 2016) May 28-29, 2016:  “Hurricane Preparedness Sales Tax Holiday” – The first $1,500 of the sales price of hurricane preparedness items are tax exempt. This excludes items purchased at airports, hotels, convenience stores, or entertainment complexes. 

August 5-6, 2016: The first $2,500 of sales price of noncommercial purchases (not leases) of items of tangible personal property (not vehicles or meals) qualify for a 2% state tax exemption. This exemption does not apply to local taxes, though St. Charles Parish will waive its local Louisiana sales tax during the same weekend as the state sales tax holiday holiday.

September 2-4, 2016: Noncommercial purchases of firearms, ammunition, and hunting supplies are tax exempt. The holiday does not include the purchase of animals for the use of hunting.

Louisiana Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Maryland Sales Tax Holidays 2016

February 13-15, 2016: “Energy Efficient Appliances Sales Tax Holiday” – Air conditioners, clothes washers and dryers, furnaces, heat pumps, boilers, solar water heaters, standard size refrigerators, dehumidifiers, programmable thermostats, compact fluorescent light bulbs, and Light-Emitting Diode (LED) light bulbs are tax exempt.

August 14-20, 2016: Items of clothing (not accessories) and footwear with a taxable price of $100 or less are tax exempt.

Maryland Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Mississippi Sales Tax Holidays 2016

July 29-30, 2016: Clothing or footwear (not accessories, rentals, or skis, swim fins, or skates) with a sales price under $100 per item are tax exempt.

Sept 2-4, 2016: Firearms, ammunition, and hunting supplies (including archery equipment) are tax exempt.

Mississippi Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Missouri Sales Tax Holidays 2016

April 19-25, 2016: “Show Me Green Sales Tax Holiday” – Retail sales of Energy Star certified new appliances of up to $1,500 per appliance are tax exempt. You can find a list of qualifying appliances here.

August 5-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Noncommercial purchases of clothing (but not accessories) with taxable value of $100 or less per item are tax exempt. School supplies up to $50 per purchase are tax exempt. Computer software with taxable value of $350 or less, and personal computers and computer peripherals up to $3,500 are tax exempt. Graphing calculators with a taxable value of $150 or less are tax exempt.

Missouri Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

New Mexico Sales Tax Holidays 2016

In New Mexico, retailers are not required to participate in sales tax holidays, so check before you shop.

August 5-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Footwear and clothing (but not accessories or athletic or protective clothing) with sales price of less than $100 per item are tax exempt. School supplies with sales price of less than $30 per item are tax exempt. Computers with sales price of $1,000 or less per item, and computer peripherals with sales price of $500 or less per item, are tax exempt. Book bags, backpacks, maps and globes with sales price less than $100 per item, and handheld calculators with sales price of less than $200 per item are tax exempt.

New Mexico Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Ohio Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Individual items of clothing priced at $75 or less, individual school supplies priced at $20 or less, and an individual school instructional materials priced at $20 or less.

Ohio Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Oklahoma Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5 -7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Any article of clothing or footwear (excluding accessories, rentals, and athletic or protective clothing) that is designed to be worn on or about the human body and that has a sales price of less than $100 is tax exempt.

Oklahoma Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

South Carolina Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5-7, 2016:”Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – Clothing (excluding rentals), clothing accessories, footwear, school supplies, computers, printers, printer supplies, and computer software are all tax exempt

South Carolina Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Tennessee Sales Tax Holidays 2016

July 29-31, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” – clothing (not accessories), school supplies, and school art supplies with sales price of $100 or less per item, and computers with a sales price of $1,500 or less per item are tax exempt.

Tennessee Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Texas Sales Tax Holidays 2016

April 23-25, 2016: “Emergency Preparation Sales Tax Holiday” –  Emergency preparation items are tax exempt. These include:

a.) a portable generator used to provide light or communications or to preserve perishable food in the event of a power outage, provided the sales price of the generator is less than $3,000

b.) a storm protection device manufactured, rated, and marketed specifically to prevent damage to a glazed or non-glazed opening during a storm or an emergency or rescue ladder, provided that the sales price of the device or ladder is less than $300

The following are tax exempt provided they are less than $75:

c.) a reusable or artificial ice product; a portable, self-powered light source; a gasoline or diesel fuel container; a AAA cell, AA cell, C cell, D cell, 6 volt, or 9 volt battery, or a package containing more than one battery, other than an automobile or boat battery; a nonelectric cooler or ice chest for food storage; a tarpaulin or other flexible waterproof sheeting; a ground anchor system or tie-down kit; a mobile telephone battery or battery charger; a portable self-powered radio, including a two-way radio or weatherband radio; a fire extinguisher, smoke detector, or carbon monoxide detector; a hatchet or axe; a self-contained first aid kit; or a nonelectric can opener.

May 28-30, 2016 – Memorial Day Weekend: “Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday” – the following Energy Star products: air conditioners (sales price up to $6,000), clothes washers, ceiling fans, dehumidifiers, dishwashers, incandescent or fluorescent lightbulbs, programmable thermostats, and refrigerators (sales price up to $2,000) are tax exempt.

“Water Efficient Products Sales Tax Holiday” – Products displaying the “Watersense” label or logo or other water conserving products. (You can find a list of applicable water conserving products here.)

August 5-7, 2016: clothing and footwear (excluding accessories, athletic, protective, or rental clothing), school supplies, and school backpacks with a sale price of less than $100 per item are tax exempt.

Texas Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

Virginia Sales Tax Holidays 2016

August 5-7, 2016: “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday” combined with an “Energy Efficiency Sales Tax Holiday” – Combined three-day annual tax holiday for school supplies and clothing, Energy Star and WaterSense products, and hurricane preparedness products. The combined holiday expires on July 1, 2017.

Hurricane preparedness products included in the Virginia sales tax holiday are: portable generators with selling price of $1,000 or less, gas-powered chainsaws with a sales price of $350 or less, chainsaw accessories with a sales price of $60 or less per item, and other hurricane preparedness items with selling price of $60 or less.

School supplies and clothing included in the Virginia sales tax holiday are: clothing and footwear with selling price of $100 or less per item, and school supplies with selling price of $20 or less per item.

Energy Star and WaterSense items included in the Virginia sales tax holiday are: noncommercial purchases of Energy Star and WaterSense qualified products with a sales price of $2,500 or less per item.

Virginia Sales Tax Holiday Guidelines for Retailers

The 2016 Back to School Tax Free Weekends

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Back to School Sales Tax Holidays from TaxJar

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States with No Sales Tax Holidays in 2016

The states not participating in sales tax holidays in 2016 are:

Arizona, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Kentucky, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Nebraska, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Utah, Vermont, Washington, West Virginia, Wisconsin, and Wyoming.

What Should Online Sellers Do About Sales Tax Holidays?

In most cases, online seller should try to honor sales tax holidays. Exceptions include when states allow retailers or certain localities to opt-out of sales tax holidays.

Amazon Sales Tax Collection and Sales Tax Holidays

Amazon honors sales tax holidays on school supplies and will automatically turn off sales tax collection on certain items during sales tax holidays. This is provided that you’ve correctly set your item’s product tax codes.

For example, products with the product tax code “A_SCHL_SUPPLS” won’t be taxed during sales tax holidays in states with a “Back to School Sales Tax Holiday.”

This is one of many reasons why it’s so important to ensure that your Product Tax Codes are set up correctly on Amazon. You can read a guide to Amazon Product Tax Codes here.

Sales Tax Holidays and Your eCommerce Store

Run your own shopping cart or marketplace? The TaxJar SmartCalcs Sales Tax API honors sales tax holidays. Just set your product codes and we’ll make sure you’re not charging sales tax on non-taxable products during sales tax holidays in 2016. Take the TaxJar SmartCalcs Sales Tax API for a free test drive today!

While we strive to keep this list of 2016 sales tax holidays up to date, keep in mind that sometimes states approve sales tax holidays mid-year. If you notice a missing sales tax holiday, let us know in the comments!

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