Have you ever bought something at a store with a price tag that read $9.99 but you actually ended up paying more than $9.99? The difference is the sales tax that the seller is required to charge and then pay to the state. Many items you purchase may require that you pay sales tax.
Let's look at a sample receipt:
You'll notice on this example receipt that the jeans, orange soda and Blu-ray DVD are taxable.
However, the apples, potato chips and gum are not taxable.
You may be confused about the 20 oz. orange soda. Why is this taxable? Read on and you'll find out the answer.
Keep this in mind when shopping as it will be necessary for you to have a little extra money on hand to cover the sales tax.
There are different sales tax rates for each county throughout Ohio. Therefore, the amount of sales tax you are charged may differ depending on where you make your purchases. Sales tax does not mean extra profits for the company. The sales tax that you pay must be collected and then sent to the Ohio Department of Taxation.
Vendors are required to collect sales tax for many services and products. However, some products are exempt from sales tax. Most food items, for example, are not subject to sales tax unless they are consumed on the premises where they are purchased.
You'll notice this when you purchase food from a drive-thru. After purchasing your meal, look at your receipt. Food items will not be taxed. However, if you go into the restaurant and eat your meal, your food items will be taxed. Also, it does not matter if you purchase soft drinks at a drive-thru or with your meal in the restaurant. Soft drinks are not considered “food” and are therefore taxable.
“Food” is defined as substances, whether in liquid, concentrated, solid, frozen, dried, or dehydrated form, that are sold for ingestion or chewing by humans and are consumed for their taste or nutritional value. “Food” does not include alcoholic beverages, dietary supplements, soft drinks, or tobacco. Other food items that are not subject to sales tax (if consumed off - premises) include:
- bottled, unsweetened water
- ice (sold at grocery, convenience or similar stores)
- fruit or vegetable juice with fruit or vegetable content of more than 50%
- chewing gum and breath mints
- sweetened beverages that contain milk, a milk product or milk substitute