Sales Tax Nexus

Basic information about US sales tax nexus.

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Written by Seller Labs
Updated over a week ago

There is no specific shared definition of nexus across the US, but most of the time, states consider that a “physical presence” or “economic connection” creates nexus.

A physical presence in a state may occur when a merchant:

  • leaves or works in this state (has a store, office, or distribution center)

  • has an employee who leaves or works in this state

  • has an inventory warehouse in this state

  • has an affiliate in this state

  • has quick sales in this state at trade shows, craft fairs, etc.

An economic connection is an economic activity in a state, regardless of whether a merchant has a physical presence in that state, and it may occur when a merchant:

  • exceeds a certain threshold on the volume of sales in this state

  • exceeds a certain threshold of the number of transactions in this state

Please consult your accountant or local tax authority to determine whether you have nexus in a state.

If a merchant has a sales tax nexus in a state, this merchant must collect sales tax from buyers. It means a merchant must determine the sales tax rate in that state, plus any local sales tax (a county, city, and “special taxing district” taxes) that might apply.

To collect sales tax legitimately, a merchant must register for a sales tax permit in that state and then file and report sales tax returns there.

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