The South Carolina (SC) state sales tax rate is currently 6.0%. Depending on local municipalities, the total tax rate can be as high as 9%. South Carolina businesses are required to file and remit sales tax electronically.
South Carolina was listed in Kiplinger’s 2011 10 tax-friendly states for retirees with one exception: “sales taxes can be high…” in addition to the statewide rate, “…counties can levy an additional 2% [but] prescription drugs are exempt.”
Amazon.com owns and operates a fulfillment center in South Carolina. This physical presence, or nexus, will eventually create a sales tax obligation for Amazon and many sellers participating in Amazon’s Seller Central and Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) programs. Amazon is slated to begin collecting in South Carolina in 2016.
South Carolina and Sales Tax
According to South Carolina, the “…state sales tax was first imposed in South Carolina in 1951.” The State sales tax rate has been 6% since 2007.
South Carolina sales tax is imposed on the gross proceeds of all sales of taxable tangible personal property, unless specific exceptions or exemptions apply. Sales tax also applies to sales of certain services, such as communication services, and accommodations.
Nonresident sellers without nexus are not required to collect sales tax but are encouraged to voluntarily do so. A discount is offered to those who do. Additional information.
How to Register
Online registration through South Carolina Business One Stop (SCBOS) is encouraged. Businesses may also register in person, by mail, or by telephone with the Business Tax TeleFile System at (800)-898-5918. Business registration forms are available on the South Carolina Department of Revenue (SCDOR) website.
How to File and Pay
The South Carolina Department of Revenue encourages the electronic filing of sales and use tax returns through the Electronic Sales Tax System (eSales). Paper forms may also be submitted to the department, which will continue to mail paper sales tax return forms until businesses advise them to stop. Additional information.
Zero returns are required and may also be filed online.
Most businesses are required to file monthly returns. However, the Department of Revenue may authorize certain businesses to file quarterly or annually.
Sales and use tax returns are due on the first day of the month following the reporting period, and they are late if remitted after the 20th day of the month following the reporting period. Additional information.
Avalara Sales and Use Tax Products for South Carolina
AvaTax – AvaTax is a powerful, online sales tax compliance solution that provides all businesses with a level of sales tax automation that until now has been available only to Fortune 500 companies. AvaTax’s transaction-based service model and seamless integration into business applications gives you rapid access to all jurisdiction assignments and real-time sales tax calculations. Cutting-edge technologies and superior processing logic can manage even the most complicated tax issues, such as situs, nexus, tax tiers, tax holidays, exemptions, certificate management and product taxability rules.
TrustFile - Avalara TrustFile provides detailed sales tax reporting for online sellers. Allowing businesses to know exactly where, when and how much to file. Ecommerce business owners can use TrustFile to determine whether or not they are collecting the right amount of sales tax in each individual state, and then store a record of their sales tax history securely in the cloud for free.