Tennessee sales tax guide for SaaS businesses

Is your product taxable in Tennessee? Get up-to-date rates, nexus thresholds, and more from Anrok’s team of tax experts.

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Is SaaS taxable in Tennessee?

Tennessee taxes a wide variety of SaaS and digital products, with limited exceptions. However, Tennessee does not tax most professional and other people services.

As the world becomes increasingly digital, more and more states are grappling with how to tax online services such as SaaS. Tennessee’s decision to tax SaaS is part of a larger trend among states seeking to capture revenue from the growing digital economy.

However, the taxability of SaaS may depend on various factors such as server location, customer location, and the type of SaaS being provided. Therefore, it is crucial to thoroughly analyze your SaaS offering and the specifics of each transaction to accurately determine whether sales tax should apply.

How to determine if your product is taxable in Tennessee

To determine if your product is taxable in Tennessee, you must first ascertain whether your product falls under a taxable category. It can be helpful to consult a tax professional to ensure that you’re properly identifying your product’s taxability.

Additionally, you should understand whether you have sales tax nexus in Tennessee. Nexus is a connection between a business and a taxing jurisdiction that requires the business to collect and remit sales tax. In Tennessee, there are various ways in which a sales tax nexus can be established. It can be through physical presence, economic presence, or a combination of both.

Physical presence in Tennessee can be established in several ways. One of the most common ways is by having a brick-and-mortar location in the state. This means that if a business has a store, warehouse, office, or any other physical location in Tennessee, it has nexus in the state. Similarly, if a business has employees who work in Tennessee, it also establishes nexus. Even if a business does not have a physical location in Tennessee but has inventory stored in the state, it still has nexus.

On the other hand, economic presence, also known as “economic nexus,” is a more recent development in sales tax laws. In Tennessee, economic nexus is created when a business exceeds $100,000 in sales in the state within a calendar year.

It is important to note that the economic nexus threshold may change over time, and businesses should keep themselves updated with the latest sales tax laws in Tennessee. Failure to comply with sales tax nexus laws can result in penalties and fines, which can be costly for businesses.

Sales tax compliance in Tennessee

Ensuring sales tax compliance in Tennessee requires understanding the taxability of your products or services, establishing whether your business has a nexus in the state, and following certain steps:

  • Register for a sales tax permit: All businesses with nexus in Tennessee must register for a sales tax permit.
  • Collect sales tax: Once you have your sales tax permit, you need to collect the appropriate amount of sales tax on taxable transactions, including any taxable SaaS products and digital goods.
  • File sales tax returns: Businesses must file periodic sales tax returns, typically on a monthly, quarterly, or annual basis, depending on the sales volume. When filing the return, you need to report the total sales and taxable sales, as well as the sales tax collected during the reporting period.
  • Remit collected sales tax: Along with filing your sales tax return, you must also remit the collected sales tax to the jurisdiction. Failure to do so could result in penalties and interest charges.

To avoid potential penalties and ensure compliance, it is advisable to consult with a tax professional or use automated sales tax software that can help you accurately calculate, collect, and remit sales tax on SaaS and other digital products in Tennessee.

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