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Lots Of Items Exempt From Tax Aug. 6-8, For Texas Back-to-School Sales Tax Weekend

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If you have kids who will soon resume classes or maybe you just need to replenish your office supplies and basics wardrobe, it could pay to wait until this weekend to make purchases. Many school supplies, clothing, shoes and student backpacks not only will be on sale, but qualifying items valued at less than $100 are exempt from local and state sales taxes as well.  This year’s Back-To-School Sales Tax Holiday begins Friday, Aug. 6, and goes through Sunday, Aug. 8.

This year, in order to promote social distancing, the Comptroller’s Office reports the back-to-school sales tax holiday will extend to include qualifying items purchased not only in-store, but also by telephone, mail, custom order or other means from Texas businesses. In order for online purchases and telephone orders from Texas businesses to be exempt from sales tax Aug. 6-8., the item must be both delivered to and paid for by the customer during the exemption period; or the order is made, paid for by and and accepted by the seller during the exemption period for immediate shipment even if delivery is made after the exemption period ends.

If the business offers it, customers may also put items on layaway or use rain checks to take advantage of the savings. The sales tax exemption may also apply to a final payment made for something already on layaway at a Texas business.

Qualifying items that customers buy during the holiday weekend with a rain check are exempt regardless of when they received the rain check. If, however, a customer gives a rain check during the holiday weekend, but pays for the qualifying item after the holiday, that item is not eligible for the exemption because it was purchased after the exemption period according to the Comptroller’s Office.

Not Qualified For Exemption

Items that do not qualify for exemption during the sales tax holiday include:

  • textbooks
  • computers
  • software
  • clothing and footwear used primarily for athletic activities or for protective wear such as basketball uniforms, baseball cleats, football pads,, fishing boots, overshoes and galoshes, roller blades and roller skates, bowling shoes, shoulder pads, shower caps,
  • clothing or footwear rentals
  • dry cleaning or laundry services
  • alterations (including embroidery)
  • items used to make or repair clothing, such as fabric, thread, yarn, buttons, snaps, hooks and zippers, shoe laces
  • jewelry, handbags, purses, briefcases, luggage, umbrellas, wallets, watches,, and other accessories
  • framed backpacks
  • luggage
  • briefcases
  • athletic, duffle or gym bags
  • computer bags
  • purses
  • accessories such as barrettes, bows, ponytail holders, hair clips, headbands, and other hair accessories. belt buckles, bobby pens
  • sunglasses

Qualified For Sales Tax Break

For kits of school supplies that contain exempt items, as well as taxable ones, the taxability depends on the value of exempt or taxable items in it. There is no limit on the quantity of school supplies in a kit, but if the value of the exempt items is more than the taxable ones, the kit is exempt. If the value of the taxable items is more than the exempt ones, then the kit is taxable.

School supplies that do qualify for the exemption that are priced under $100 include:

  • Binders
  • Blackboard chalk
  • Book bags
  • Calculators
  • Cellophane tape
  • Compasses
  • Composition books
  • Crayons
  • Erasers
  • Folders – expandable, pocket, plastic, and manila
  • Glue, paste and paste sticks
  • Highlighters
  • Index cards
  • Index card boxes
  • Legal pads
  • Lunch boxes
  • Markers (including dry erase markers)
  • Notebooks
  • Paper – loose leaf ruled notebook paper, copy paper, graph paper, tracing paper, manila paper, colored paper, poster board, and construction paper
  • Pencil boxes and other school supply boxes
  • Pencil sharpeners
  • Pencils
  • Pens
  • Protractors
  • Rulers
  • Scissors
  • Writing tablets

Among clothes and shoes that qualify for the sales tax break are

  • socks
  • baby clothes and bibs
  • baseball football and other jerseys
  • belts with attached buckles
  • blouses and shirts
  • general purpose boots, cowboy boots, hiking boots
  • bras
  • camp clothes
  • chef uniforms, shawls and wraps
  • dresses
  • flip-flops (rubber thongs), jellies, sneakers, tennis shoes,
  • running shoes and cross trainers
  • sleepwear, nightgowns, pajamas
  • pants, suits, slacks, jackets, support hosiery, suspenders
  • sweat shirts, sweat suits, sweaters
  • swimsuits, underclothes, underpants
  • uniforms
  • veils
  • work clothes, workout clothes, work uniforms.
  • cloth and disposable fabric face masks costumes
  • baby and adult diapers

Author: Faith Huffman

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