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Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT)/Licensing
(Commonly referred to as a Sales, Resale, Wholesale, Vendor or Tax License)

If you are selling a product or engaging in a service subject to transaction privilege tax, you will most likely need to obtain the state transaction privilege tax (TPT) license from the Arizona Department of Revenue (commonly referred to as a sales tax, resale, wholesale, vendor or tax license) and a transaction privilege tax or business/occupational license from the city(ies) in which you are based and/or operate.

If you have questions about whether or not your business activity is subject to transaction privilege tax/licensing, check with both the Arizona Department of Revenue and the licensing office(s) of the city(ies) in which you will be based and/or operate.

Below you will find helpful information about the transaction privilege ("sales") tax and how to obtain the state and city licenses.


OVERVIEW

The Arizona transaction privilege tax is commonly referred to as a sales tax; however, the tax is on the privilege of doing business in Arizona and is not a true sales tax. Although the transaction privilege tax is usually passed on to the consumer, it is actually a tax on the vendor.

Arizona transaction privilege taxes are imposed on persons engaged in certain business classifications, including retail sales. What this means is that various business activities are subject to state, county and/or city transaction privilege tax (TPT).

Types of business activities subject to the transaction privilege tax include, but are not limited to: retail sales, restaurants/bars, hotel/motel (transient lodging), commercial leasing, advertising, amusements, personal property rentals, real property rentals, construction contracting, owner/builders, manufactured building, severance (mining, timbering), transportation, printing, publishing, utilities, communications, air/railroad, private cars/pipelines and use tax.

The Department of Revenue collects the tax for the counties and most cities, however, some of the cities license and collect their tax independently. Tax rates vary depending on the type of business activity, the city and the county.

Please note: There are some differences between the state and local authorities in the taxability of transactions. For instance, the state does not impose a transaction privilege tax on 1) renting, leasing, or licensing for use residential real property or 2) the sale of advertising. However, many cities do tax these activities.

For questions regarding taxability and licensing, contact the office responsible for collecting the tax (i.e., the Arizona Department of Revenue and/or the local city/town licensing office.) 

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STATE TAX/LICENSE (commonly referred to as a Sales, Resale, Wholesale, Vendor or Tax License)

The Arizona Department of Revenue (DOR) Arizona Joint Tax Application is used to apply for Transaction Privilege Tax, Use Tax, and Employer Withholding and Unemployment Insurance. The application is called “joint” because it is used by both the Departments of Revenue and Economic Security and allows you to apply for any of the listed licenses and registrations on a single application. 
  
The Arizona Department of Revenue now offers businesses the opportunity to complete the Joint Tax Application online, download the signature card and submit in person or by mail along with payment. Once the license registration is completed, and the business is registered to use the site, businesses may file and pay their transaction privilege, use and withholding taxes online.

The Arizona Joint Tax Application can also be downloaded from the DOR website. To apply for the state transaction privilege tax license, visit their website or contact them.

Arizona Department of Revenue License
Arizona Joint Tax Application (JT-1) for
 - State Transaction Privilege Tax (TPT) License 
 - State Withholding/Unemployment Tax License (if hiring employees)
 - State Use Tax License
 - State Luxury Tax License
 - Privilege Tax Licenses for many Arizona Cities and Towns

*Note: Due to bonding requirements construction contractors are not permitted to file online.

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 CITY TAX/LICENSE

Check with each city/town in which you are based and/or operate to verify city tax/license requirements. The Arizona Commerce Authority Small Business Services’ Checklist Program includes a list of City/Town Offices and provides contact information and links to download license applications.
 

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TAX BROCHURES

The Arizona Department of Revenue publishes informational brochures regarding activities subject to state transaction privilege tax. To view/print their tax brochures, see the Publications page.

Many cities publish their own informational brochures regarding activities subject to city transaction privilege tax. For city tax information, check with the city(ies) in which you will be based and/or operate. The Arizona Commerce Authority Small Business Services’ Checklist Program includes a list of City/Town Offices and provides contact information and links to the city/town websites.

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COLLECTION OF TAXES/TAX RATE TABLES

The Arizona Department of Revenue collects the tax on behalf of the county and most cities; however, many of the larger cities in Arizona administer and collect their own privilege taxes. These cities are referred to as non-program cities. Sales in the non-program cities must be reported directly to the applicable city. The state and county taxes must still be reported and remitted to the state. A list of the non-program cities along with their contact information is available on the Arizona Department of Revenue website.

The Arizona Department of Revenue Transaction Privilege (Sales) Tax Rate Tables contain rates for Transaction Privilege and other taxes imposed by the State of Arizona, the counties, and most Arizona cities. To view the tables, visit one of the links below.
 

Arizona Department of Revenue

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ADDITIONAL RESOURCES:

Arizona Commerce Authority - Arizona Entrepreneur's Edge Resource Guide - Chapter 5
Licensing and Taxes


Arizona Department of Revenue
Transaction Privilege Tax - Frequently Asked Questions
Business Licensing 
Retail Sales 
Use Tax

Transaction Privilege (Sales) Tax Due Dates - Download Calendar

Business Basics - A Guide to Taxes for Arizona Businesses

Summary of Arizona Taxes - Publication 010

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