The Procurement Card Handbook requires Cardholders to inform each merchant of the University’s status as a tax-exempt organization, which you did. If the vendor insists on charging sales tax even after being given documentation of our tax exempt status, in the Expense System Comments field explain that the vendor was notified of CU’s tax exempt status but still refused to remove the sales tax from the purchase. Include any other additional documentation (e.g. email exchange, phone call details, etc.) to support this occurrence. For future purchases, consider using a different vendor that honors our tax exempt status.
As a public institution of higher education of the State of Colorado, the University of Colorado (CU) is exempt from all federal excise taxes and from all Colorado State and local government sales and use taxes. In addition, CU is exempt from sales and use taxes levied by select other states – namely, New Jersey, New York, Tennessee, and Texas. Vendors who need verification of CU’s tax-exempt status can view the Tax Exempt Status page. In many cases, printing out and supplying a one-page Tax Exempt Status sheet for your vendor will suffice.
If your vendor asks about a specialized tax-exempt certificate form, direct them first to the Related Links (grey box) located at the bottom portion of the above Tax Exempt Status page. Currently, there is a link to the Multi-jurisdiction Sales Tax Exemption Certificate (Texas & Colorado). Additional links to other specialized certificates will continue to be added.
Vendors who cannot use any of the certificates already published on the web should fax or email their own forms to the Finance and Procurement Help Desk: fax 303-837-2160 or FinProHelp@cu.edu. The Help Desk will work with the Associate Vice President and University Controller to determine the appropriate form and obtain signatures, and then return the form to the vendor. (Note that many of these alternative certificates are specific to the situation and therefore require additional information about the purchase – the organizational unit or the vendor should provide this. Contact FinProHelp if you have additional questions: 303-837-2161.) (3/15)
No, the university is not subject to sales tax on giveaway items. The Colorado Department of Revenue publishes a series of publications called FYI – For Your Information on several revenue areas, one of them sales tax. Publication #32 titled Gifts, Premiums and Prizes states, “Purchases of tangible personal property for use as gifts, premiums or prizes, for which no valuable consideration is received from the recipient, are subject to tax on the total purchase price; the purchaser is deemed to be the user-consumer of such property.” Since the University is considered the end user-consumer, it is treated the same as other purchases used for University business and is not subject to sales tax. You must use regular procurement methods for these items, not reimbursed personal purchases. (3/15)