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Sales Tax 101

Sales Tax by State: Which payment methods can you use to pay sales tax?

by Jennifer Dunn

Can you pay sales tax with a credit card? How about paying sales tax with good old fashioned cash? These are just some of the questions that eCommerce businesses ask when it comes to actually remitted sales tax you’ve collected back to the state.

To answer that, we researched every state to discover what payment methods they accept. 

But before we get to the list, we did notice a few trends.

States moving toward EFT-only sales tax payment

Many states are phasing out, or already have phased out, payment by cash, check or money order in favor of recruiting taxpayers to pay their sales tax bills by Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT).

Arizona, for example, requires most taxpayers to pay via EFT. If a taxpayer elects not to, they’ll be hit with a 5% penalty. Ouch!

Be on the lookout for notifications from your state and be prepared to begin paying via EFT. If you really need to pay with cash or a check, we recommend contacting your state’s taxing authority to request a waiver.

ACH Debit vs. ACH Credit: What’s the difference?

The Automated Clearinghouse Network (ACH) is a very popular form of electronic funds transfer (EFT). To put it another way, all ACH transactions are a form of electronic funds transfer (AKA EFT,) but not all EFT transactions are powered by ACH.

Some states allow you to pay via ACH Debit or via ACH Credit, but what does that mean exactly? 

  • ACH Debit transactions take place when the institution—in this case, a state taxing authority—“pulls” money from your account.
  • ACH Credit transactions take place when your bank “pushes” money to the institution’s bank account. 

ACH Debit transactions are typically free, while ACH Credit transfers often come with a fee of up to $3. To initiate an ACH Credit you may even need to contact your bank. For that reason, ACH Debit is generally more commonly used.

A note on this table: Payment information can be surprisingly hard to find outside of the privacy of a state’s taxpayer portal. We’ve included links in this table if states provide public information about payment methods.

Also please note that some states provide public information about the many methods you can use to pay personal tax such as income tax, but not business tax like sales tax. We tried to be as thorough and accurate as possible here, but if you see a mistake or that something has changed, feel free to leave us a message in the comments and we’ll get that updated.

State Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT) Credit Card Other
Alabama Yes, via ACH Debit from checking or savings account American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check
Arizona Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings account American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa or Visa or Mastercard branded debit cards (Convenience fee may apply) Check, Cash (may be subject to 5% penalty if not paid electronically)
Arkansas Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

Visa & Mastercard

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
California Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Money Order
Colorado Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking Any (Convenience fee may apply) Check or Money Order
Connecticut Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) N/A; most taxpayers are required to pay sales tax electronically
Georgia Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or Money Order
Florida Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit

from checking only 

Visa & Mastercard

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order but no cashier’s check 
Idaho Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit  from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) N/A
Illinois Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa Check or money order
Indiana Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings Visa or MasterCard (Convenience fee may apply) Check or money order, in person cash payment
Iowa Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or money order (payments must be at least $1); By phone with credit or debit card
Kansas Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking account American Express, Discover, Mastercard,Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or Money order; BillMeLater
Kentucky EFT Debit from checking or savings No Check or money order
Louisiana Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

(No convenience fee if paying through LATap – Louisiana Taxpayer Access Point website)

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
Maryland Yes, direct debit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or money order
Massachusetts Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings  American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
Michigan Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit Yes, specific card providers not specified (Convenience fee may apply) Check by mail
Minnesota Yes, via ACH Credit American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or money order. In-person cash payments
Mississippi Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
Missouri Credit or e-check. Debit is accepted and processed as credit American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) N/A
Nebraska Yes, using your bank account number and your routing number Any Check
New Jersey Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit or other EFT method American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) N/A
New Mexico Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit American Express, MasterCard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or Money Order
New York Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit American Express, MasterCard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) Check or Money Order
North Carolina Yes, via Debt/Credit

from checking or savings (depending on your bank) 

Visa & Mastercard 

Convenience fee is 2% 

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
North Dakota Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit or Moneygram American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply); Interbank networks (Convenience fee may apply): Star, Pulse, Nyce Check or Money Order, in person cash
Ohio Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa (Convenience fee may apply) N/A, Taxpayers are required to pay electronically 
Pennsylvania Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit American Express, Discover, MasterCard, or Visa (Convenience fee may apply); Mastercard or Visa debit cards Check; Certified cashier’s check required for payments over $1,000
Rhode Island Yes, via Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off

check, money order or cashier’s check 

South Carolina Yes, via Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

American Express, Mastercard, Visa;

No fees apply

Can mail or drop off check, money order or cashier’s check
South Dakota Yes, via Debit/Credit from checking or savings Discover, Mastercard & Visa

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order

or cashier’s check

Tennessee Yes, via Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

Visa & Mastercard

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off 

check, money order or cashier’s check 

(Note: The state is phasing this out in favor of EFT only) 

Texas WebEFT from checking or savings account American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa  (Convenience fee may apply) N/A, most taxpayers required to pay electronically 
Utah EFT via e-check American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa  (Convenience fee may apply) N/A, most taxpayers required to pay electronically 
Vermont Yes, via ACH Debit from checking or savings account American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa  (Convenience fee may apply) Personal check, cashier’s check, money order
Virginia Yes, via ACH Debit/Credit from checking or savings No No, businesses required to file electronically
Washington EFT debit or EFT credit; e-check American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa  (Convenience fee may apply) Check or cash, but only if you receive a waiver from mandatory electronic filing 
West Virginia Yes, via ACH Credit or Debit from checking or savings American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa  (Convenience fee may apply) N/A, most taxpayers required to pay electronically 
Wisconsin Yes, via Debit/Credit

from checking or savings

American Express, Discover, Mastercard, Visa

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off (by appointment only)

by check, money order or cashier’s check (Note: The state is phasing this out in favor of EFT only) 

Wyoming Yes, via Debt/Credit

from checking or savings

Visa & Mastercard

(Convenience fee may apply)

Can mail or drop off check, money order, cash or cashier’s check

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