How To Take Advantage Of Tax-Free Weekend As An Online Or In Store Shopper

The back to school Sales Tax Holiday starts Friday. The “holiday” is a state law that exempts most clothes, shoes and school supplies under $100 from sales and use taxes. Online shoppers get the same benefits.

The savings on a tax-free weekend might seem small, but the holiday can save shoppers up to 8$ for every $100 dollars spent, even for online shoppers.

Chris Bryan is with the Texas Comptroller of Public Accounts. He says even if the online stores don’t have locations in Texas, they are still required to participate.

“Generally retailers are very good about participating, however, there have been instances where sales tax has been charged in error.” says Bryan.

He says the best thing to do is contact the company after the purchase has been made and ask for a partial refund, but says shoppers can also contact the Comptroller of Public Accounts and get the refund directly from the state.

Nonetheless, online stores rarely add sales tax to their purchases during tax holidays. Bryan says most retailers are aware of which states have a sales tax-free holiday and anticipates most will participate.

“This is not only an opportunity for families to save money,” says Bryan, “it’s also an opportunity for retailers to reach out to their customers and make some money.”

Texas is only one of seventeen states to have a tax holiday. Some states branch out beyond just clothing and school supplies. Louisiana has a “Second Amendment Weekend Sales Tax” where hunting equipment and firearms are tax-free. Other states have tax free holidays that offer books, computers and hurricane preparedness items.

Here in Texas, the tax has no spending limit as long as individual purchases are under $100 dollars.

The comptroller of public accounts says that “if a customer buys two shirts for $80 each, then both items qualify for the exemption, even though the customer’s total price exceeds $99.99.

The tax-free weekend starts Friday, August the 7th and runs until Sunday, August 9th.  


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