I Serving Clients
Sales Tax Colorado works to
resolve and minimize companies prior and prospective Sales & Use Tax exposure. We will
estimate and focus on your most material Sales & Use Tax liabilities first.
Once the exposure quantifications have been completed, we will provide recommendations and assist
in executing procedures to rectify the situation. Such assistance may include Voluntary Disclosure
Agreements or alternative registration methods designed to minimize prior and future exposure. It
may also include negotiations for interest and penalty abatement or reductions, Offers in
Compromise, and developing taxability matrices and procedure manuals to further assist in
determining taxability to reduce future errors.
Saving Money, Time And Hassle With
Is your company registered to collect and pay Sales & Use Tax in every state where you are
required to be? If not, consider the benefits of a Voluntary Disclosure Agreement which can save
you money and keep you out of future trouble.
Voluntary Disclosure services from
Sales Tax Colorado can help you minimize and resolve prior-period tax exposure. If you've recently
identified prior-period Sales & Use Tax exposure, we can negotiate with the state on an
anonymous basis on behalf of your business. We can also work to minimize or abate penalties,
interest and past tax liabilities, while helping bring your company into prospective
What Is A Voluntary Disclosure
A Voluntary Disclosure Agreement ("VDA") is a negotiated settlement on behalf of a
company that has not filed Sales or Use Tax returns in a particular state. It typically gives
companies the opportunity to willingly pay these taxes without being penalized and to limit the
state's look-back period. This process can save a company hundreds of thousands to tens of millions
of dollars. A Voluntary Disclosure Agreement is generally handled by a professional, independent
third party who negotiates with the state on an anonymous basis on behalf of a company.
Many states have a policy of
encouraging and assisting taxpayers through Voluntary Disclosure Agreements.
How It Works.
In exchange for voluntarily coming forward to disclose a potential liability and agreeing to
register and collect Sales Tax going forward, states often waive penalties and reduce or forgive
interest. Generally, states agree not to initiate criminal proceedings against the taxpayer (or its
officers, directors or stockholders). They also typically will not impose civil fraud penalties
based on the information voluntarily disclosed. A taxpayer who voluntarily discloses a prior
liability must agree to pay all accrued taxes for an agreed upon look-back period. The look-back
period is usually limited to the statute of limitations period.
Keep in mind that there is generally
no statute of limitations for a company that has not been filing Sales & Use Tax returns. In
such cases, the liability for Sales & Use Taxes extends back to the first day you were
considered to have a nexus within a particular state. This can mean the day the first sale in the
state was made subsequent to establishing nexus. VDA programs vary by state. It is important that
the person negotiating these agreements has a thorough understanding of these various programs
- What terms to typically expect from each
- The degree of latitude that state statutes grant
to VDA unit personnel to modify the standard VDA terms.
- The right contacts at the individual revenue
- Sufficient experience in the respective states to
know what favorable terms are possible.
A well-negotiated Voluntary Disclosure
Agreement with a state can limit a company's exposure for Sales & Use Tax and may include more
favorable terms than typical agreements.
Criteria For Qualifying.
When determining eligibility for a Voluntary Disclosure Agreement, states typically consider
factors such as whether the company:
- Has a tax liability to report; is located outside
state; and was not previously registered in the state.
- Is currently engaged in business in the
- Is choosing to register voluntarily with the
- Has not previously been contacted by the state or
its agents regarding its activities in state.
- Failed to pay the tax or file a return due to
reasonable cause, and not due to negligence or intentional disregard of the law.
Streamlined Sales Tax
Registering with the Streamlined Sales
Tax (SST) Agreement states can be very beneficial in certain scenarios and can
help make the Voluntary Disclosure process simpler and straightforward. Under the Streamlined Sales
Tax agreement, a group of states have joined together to provide common definitions and rules for
Sales & Use Taxes among the participating states.
The most significant potential benefit may be complete relief from all accrued Sales & Use Tax
liabilities in one or more member states. In this respect, all member states are required to
provide a one year amnesty period upon becoming a Streamlined Sales Tax member state. The SST
became effective on October 1, 2005, but additional states continue to join as full or associate
The original amnesty period has passed so this reduces the overall amnesty benefit and complicates
the decision as to whether SST registration will result in a net benefit. The most significant
drawback to SST registration is the requirement to file Sales & Use Tax returns in all the SST
member states for a minimum of three years including states in which the registrant would not
otherwise have a legal requirement to file.
A careful evaluation of your firm's
situation is essential to see if SST registration is the right exposure resolution option for you.
Our professionals can help with the evaluation and ensure you make an informed decision. Sales Tax
Colorado can also assist you with the registration process and some of the technical implementation
considerations and issues such as:
- Assist in understanding your company's benefits,
rights and obligations associated with participating in the SST program.
- Assist with completion of the Central SST
- Assist in identifying and managing completion of
the additional Sales Tax registration requirements imposed by individual SST states.
- Assist with selection of an SST Certified Service
Provider ("CSP") and the corresponding process of outsourcing your SST state compliance
process to the CSP.
- Assist the CSP in understanding your company's
products and services.
- Perform any necessary tax research and
proactively supply the CSP provider with any information needed to load the tax decision
- Review the taxability logic contained in the
proposed tax decision tables to identify and correct any material inaccuracies.
- Meet with and communicate with your company's
personnel, CSP representatives and respective state representatives as needed to insure proper
installation and integration of the CSP software and to fully turn over your Sales & Use Tax
function to the selected CSP.
- Notify you of any obstacles that might affect the
feasibility of SST participation and provide you with proposed alternative approaches for resolving
your prior period Sales Tax obligations in relevant SST member states.
SST is not right for everyone. Other
exposure resolution options may be best for you. Selecting which approach to use to resolve prior
period noncompliance is a business decision that should be considered carefully for each applicable
individual taxing jurisdiction.
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us today for a no-obligation
consultation about your Sales & Use Tax issues.