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.

  

How is a utility trailer taxed and where is the tax paid?

Trailers that weigh 4,000 pounds or more must be titled as a motor vehicle and are taxed as any other motor vehicle.

Trailers that weigh less than 4,000 pounds are not titled as motor vehicles. While they are still subject to sales or use tax, the tax must be collected by the Ohio vendor or registered out-of-state seller and remitted directly to the State of Ohio.  If the seller is not a vendor in Ohio and is not registered as an out-of-state seller, the consumer must pay consumer’s use tax.  The use tax can be remitted as a voluntary payment using our VP-USE form found on our Web site at Tax Forms, or the use tax can be paid on the state income tax return.

How is a utility trailer taxed and where is the tax paid?

Trailers that weigh 4,000 pounds or more must be titled as a motor vehicle and are taxed as any other motor vehicle.

Trailers that weigh less than 4,000 pounds are not titled as motor vehicles. While they are still subject to sales or use tax, the tax must be collected by the Ohio vendor or registered out-of-state seller and remitted directly to the State of Ohio.  If the seller is not a vendor in Ohio and is not registered as an out-of-state seller, the consumer must pay consumer’s use tax.  The use tax can be remitted as a voluntary payment using our VP-USE form found on our Web site at Tax Forms, or the use tax can be paid on the state income tax return.

How is a utility trailer taxed and where is the tax paid?

Trailers that weigh 4,000 pounds or more must be titled as a motor vehicle and are taxed as any other motor vehicle.

Trailers that weigh less than 4,000 pounds are not titled as motor vehicles. While they are still subject to sales or use tax, the tax must be collected by the Ohio vendor or registered out-of-state seller and remitted directly to the State of Ohio.  If the seller is not a vendor in Ohio and is not registered as an out-of-state seller, the consumer must pay consumer’s use tax.  The use tax can be remitted as a voluntary payment using our VP-USE form found on our Web site at Tax Forms, or the use tax can be paid on the state income tax return.