Many States Offer Back-to-School Sales Tax Holidays in 2013

By Jason Bramwell
 
Did you know there are seventeen states where state sales tax charges are temporarily dropped on back-to-school items, such as clothing, footwear, classroom supplies, computers, and certain other products? 
 
Sales tax holidays timed for back-to-school shopping begin as early as July 26, with the majority held in early August, according to CCH.
 
"What's really important for consumers to know is the specific information about products that qualify for each state's holiday in order to maximize sales tax savings," Carol Kokinis-Graves, JD, CCH senior state tax analyst, said in a written statement. "Typically, several restrictions will apply, and each state usually provides official, highly detailed rules on specific items that do or do not qualify for state sales tax exemptions on designated dates."
 
Kokinis-Graves cautions that local sales taxes may still be imposed in some communities.
 
Massachusetts was the only state that discontinued its sales tax holiday in 2013. New York State does not offer a specific sales tax holiday, but items of clothing and footwear sold for less than $110 are exempt from the state's sales and use tax throughout the year.
 
Back-to-School Sales Tax Holidays by State
While some states limit the exemption to clothes and shoes, others extend exemptions to a wide range of personal items. All put dollar limits on the amount exempt from sales tax - from as little as $15 for school supplies in Florida to as much as $3,500 for computers in Missouri and North Carolina.
 
Mississippi already had its sales tax holiday on July 26 and 27, in which clothing or footwear (not accessories, rentals, skis, swim fins, or skates) with a sales price under $100 per item was exempt. 

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