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How Much Do We Collect? Sales Tax Liability for Nonprofit Sales

It’s no surprise to pay sales tax when buying goods at stores.  But what happens when a nonprofit organization sells goods, through a website, at periodic conferences, or as part of its program activities?  Must the nonprofit collect sales tax too on its sales of T-shirts, books, or other items made available to others, just like a store?  Aren’t nonprofits exempt from taxes?  If a nonprofit’s sales are not exempt, under which state sales tax law will it owe sales tax?

How Much Do We Owe? Multi-State Nonprofit Sales Tax Exemptions for Retail Purchases

Does your nonprofit organization purchase tangible goods at retail, like office supplies, furniture, or computers?  If so, it may qualify for exemption from state sales tax on such purchases, with substantial resulting savings. That’s great news!  Keep in mind though that sales tax exemption is state-specific.  Each state has its own exemption qualification requirements, application process, and renewal aspects. So if a nonprofit buys goods elsewhere, such as for out-of-state conferences or a new program office, it may need to apply for sales tax exemptions in other states. 

Hively Update: Seventh Circuit Expands Title VII’s “Sex” to “Sexual Orientation,” in En Banc Ruling

When does the word “sex” mean “sexual orientation,” for purposes of employment discrimination? In the pivotal Hively v. Ivy Tech Community College ruling issued last month, an eight-member majority of all the federal Seventh Circuit judges expanded “sex” to encompass “sexual orientation” for purposes of Title VII protection, although for varying reasons expressed through concurring opinions.  Three other judges dissented, urging judicial restraint in light of statutory interpretation constraints and settled law.  How did the judges come to such differing conclusions, and what can nonprofit employers learn from this decision?

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