close print view
Sales and Use Tax FAQs
Individuals or businesses that sell tangible personal property to the final consumer are required to remit a 6% sales tax on their taxable retail sales to the State of Michigan. Sales of electricity, natural or artificial gas and home heating fuels for residential use are taxed at the 4% rate. Michigan does not allow city or local units to impose sales or use taxes.
The use tax is a companion tax to the sales tax. Use tax of 6% must be paid on the total price (including shipping and handling charges) of all taxable items brought into Michigan or purchases by mail from out-of-state retailers. Credit is given for tax paid to another state. Use tax is also applied to certain services such as telecommunications and hotel/motel accommodations.
Is there a fee for a sales tax license?
Who needs a sales tax license?
Individuals or businesses that sell tangible personal property to the final consumer need a sales tax license.
How do I obtain a sales tax license?
You may obtain a Michigan sales tax license by completing Form 518, Registration for Michigan Taxes. Additional registration information for the application process can be found by visiting the Michigan Registration Web page.
Do I need a sales tax license if I only plan to make retail sales at a couple of events per year?
If you make retail sales at only one or two events in Michigan per year you may complete the Form 2271, Concessionaire's Sales Tax Return and Payment. If you prefer to obtain a sales tax license you may complete Form 518, Registration for Michigan Taxes.
( Return to Top )
I can't find my coupons to pay my sales, use and withholding tax. How do I file and pay the tax owed?
Form 160, Combined Return for Michigan Taxes is available on line.
Can I use my annual return to replace my monthly or quarterly returns?
No. The annual return is due February 28th and is used to reconcile, balance and close the year. Please contact Treasury at 517-636-4730 to request replacement returns for your account.
How often do I need to file a tax return for sales, use and withholding taxes?
Your total sales, use and withholding tax liability for a calendar year determines the filing frequency of Form 160, Combined Return for Michigan Taxes:
How do I amend my sales, use and withholding tax returns?
To file and amend a sales, use and withholding monthly, quarterly, or annual return, send:
Amended return information sent without payment should be addressed to:
If the amendment results in additional tax due, send your information and payment to the address listed on the form.
( Return to Top )
Are delivery, shipping or handling charges taxable?
Yes, delivery or shipping charges incurred prior to transfer of ownership of tangible personal property are subject to tax. Handling charges are a part of gross proceeds and are taxable. When a customer is billed for delivery or shipping and handling as a combined total, the total charge is taxable.
Can I get a refund of my sales tax when I return an item to the retailer?
Yes, when items are returned for a credit or refund for all or a portion of the purchase price within the time period in the seller's refund policy or 180 days after the initial sale, whichever is sooner. The seller shall also refund or provide a credit for the sales tax. The retailer may request proof of Michigan tax paid.
I paid tax to another state/country on items purchased there. Is use tax still owed to Michigan?
Yes. Michigan allows credit of up to 6% sales or use tax properly paid to another state or local unit of that state. Michigan does not have a provision for credit of purchases delivered or brought into Michigan from foreign countries or U.S. Territories.
Can a customer tell a seller not to charge sales or use tax because they will pay it directly to Michigan?
Yes, if a customer provides a copy of their direct pay permit authorized by the Michigan Department of Treasury to pay tax directly to the State.
Why do some out-of-state businesses collect use tax when other businesses do not?
Michigan, like other states, can require a business to collect and remit use tax only if the business has a physical presence in this state. Examples of a presence in a state would be a store, warehouse, or employees or representatives of the business. They may also volunteer to collect and remit use tax for sales in Michigan.
Why is the use tax sometimes referred to as the remote sales tax?
Use tax is generally applied to purchases from an out-of-state remote seller of merchandise made through catalogs, telephone orders or the Internet.
What are the dates and rate changes of Prepaid Gasoline Sales Tax?
What are the dates and rate changes of Prepaid Diesel Sales Tax?
What is the correct amount of gas tax to be deducted on my worksheet for sales, use and withholding taxes?
The current deduction amount is $0.19 per gallon sold.
( Return to Top )
How do I get a tax-exempt number?
The Michigan Department of Treasury does not issue "tax exempt numbers". Sellers should not accept a number as evidence of exemption from sales and use tax. To claim exemption for purchases the buyer must present the seller with a completed Form 3372, Michigan Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption, available on our Web site.
For more information on exemptions see Revenue Administrative Bulletin 2002-15.
What form do I use to claim exemption from sales or use tax?
Form 3372, Michigan Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption is used in claiming exemption from Michigan sales and use tax.
For further information on exemptions refer to Revenue Administrative Bulletin 2002-15.
Are materials purchased for the construction of a building that will be owned by a tax-exempt entity subject to tax?
A contractor is considered the consumer of all the materials they use to fulfill their contract and as such must pay 6% tax on their purchases. There are four exemptions for a contractor making real property improvements for a project involving the following entities:
Revenue Administrative Bulletin 1999-2 provides additional information.
Is manufacturing equipment tax exempt?
Tangible personal property used or consumed in industrial processing is tax exempt.
For further information on exemptions refer to Revenue Administrative Bulletin 2000-4.
Are purchases made for agricultural production tax exempt?
The exemption is limited to the consumption of tangible personal property used in tilling, planting, caring for or harvesting things of the soil, in the breeding, raising or caring of livestock poultry or horticultural products for further growth. The exemption does not include tangible personal property affixed to and becoming a structural part of real estate.
( Return to Top )
Michigan.gov Home Contact Treasury State Web Sites FAQ Sitemap
Copyright © 2001-2013 State of Michigan