Vehicle Taxability & Exemptions

Taxability & Exemptions of Motor Vehicles

All sales of motor vehicle are subject to sales or use tax unless an exemption applies.  The tax rate charged is based on the county of the purchaser’s residence.  While  other items may be exempted as a casual sale, the resale of a used motor vehicle is not eligible for this exemption.  

Did you receive a notice from us? 

The definition of a Casual Sale is found in R.C. 5739.01(L).

The application of Sales and Use tax to a casual sale can be referenced in R.C. 5739.02(B)(8)

What is an exemption?

An exemption is a statutory reason that a retail sale is not subject to  sales or use tax. This page discusses exemptions that may apply to motor vehicle transfers.

 

A few examples of exemptions for motor vehicles:

Direct FarmingFarming –Motor vehicles  used primarily in the production of agricultural products for sale may be exempt under R.C. 5739.02(B)(17)

Transportation for Hire – Motor vehicles used primarily in transporting tangible personal property for others may be exempt under R.C. 5739.02(B)(32)

Nonprofit Organizations & Churches – Purchases of motor vehicles by nonprofit charitable organizations and churches may be exempt if the vehicle is purchased by and titled in the name of the organization.  R.C. 5739.02(B)(12)

Transportation Services and Public Utilities  – Vehicles   primarily used to provide taxable transportation services,  such as taxicabs or charter services.  Note—the purchaser  is required to have a vendor’s license and remit sales tax on its taxable transportation services.  R.C. 5739.02(B)(41)

What other vehicle purchases are exempt from the sales and use tax?

Find the answer on our Exemptions Definitions page.

 

Frequently Asked Questions Tool

The Ohio Department of Taxation has compiled a list of frequently asked questions covering many different categories.

To view the questions, click on the "Select Category" bar and then click on  the category you are interested in.  A list of questions will appear pertaining to that category. Then click on the question you are inquiring about and the answer will appear.

  

Is GAP taxable?

GAP stands for guaranteed auto protection. It is a coverage sold when a new car is purchased or leased. In the event a vehicle is totally destroyed, it covers the negative difference between the vehicle’s value and the amount still owed on the loan.

If GAP is sold with the motor vehicle and included in the retail buyer’s agreement for the purchase of a motor vehicle, or in a retail lease agreement, it is subject to sales tax.  Conversely, if GAP is sold separately from the retail buyer’s agreement or lease agreement of a motor vehicle, it is not subject to sales tax.

R.C. 5739.01(B)(10) includes the definition of a "sale":

All transactions in which “guaranteed auto protection” is provided whereby a person promises to pay to the consumer the difference between the amount the consumer receives from motor vehicle insurance and the amount the consumer owes to a person holding title to or a lien on the consumer’s motor vehicle in the event the consumer’s motor vehicle suffers a total loss under the terms of the motor vehicle insurance policy or is stolen and not recovered, if the protection and its price are included in the purchase or lease agreement.

Is GAP taxable?

GAP stands for guaranteed auto protection. It is a coverage sold when a new car is purchased or leased. In the event a vehicle is totally destroyed, it covers the negative difference between the vehicle’s value and the amount still owed on the loan.

If GAP is sold with the motor vehicle and included in the retail buyer’s agreement for the purchase of a motor vehicle, or in a retail lease agreement, it is subject to sales tax.  Conversely, if GAP is sold separately from the retail buyer’s agreement or lease agreement of a motor vehicle, it is not subject to sales tax.

R.C. 5739.01(B)(10) includes the definition of a "sale":

All transactions in which “guaranteed auto protection” is provided whereby a person promises to pay to the consumer the difference between the amount the consumer receives from motor vehicle insurance and the amount the consumer owes to a person holding title to or a lien on the consumer’s motor vehicle in the event the consumer’s motor vehicle suffers a total loss under the terms of the motor vehicle insurance policy or is stolen and not recovered, if the protection and its price are included in the purchase or lease agreement.

Is GAP taxable?

GAP stands for guaranteed auto protection. It is a coverage sold when a new car is purchased or leased. In the event a vehicle is totally destroyed, it covers the negative difference between the vehicle’s value and the amount still owed on the loan.

If GAP is sold with the motor vehicle and included in the retail buyer’s agreement for the purchase of a motor vehicle, or in a retail lease agreement, it is subject to sales tax.  Conversely, if GAP is sold separately from the retail buyer’s agreement or lease agreement of a motor vehicle, it is not subject to sales tax.

R.C. 5739.01(B)(10) includes the definition of a "sale":

All transactions in which “guaranteed auto protection” is provided whereby a person promises to pay to the consumer the difference between the amount the consumer receives from motor vehicle insurance and the amount the consumer owes to a person holding title to or a lien on the consumer’s motor vehicle in the event the consumer’s motor vehicle suffers a total loss under the terms of the motor vehicle insurance policy or is stolen and not recovered, if the protection and its price are included in the purchase or lease agreement.