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The West Virginia Office of Tax Appeals found that staffing agencies that provided medical professionals were not entitled to a refund of consumers’ sales and service tax because the service provided by a temporary employment agency is taxable under West Virginia regulations. Personal and professional services, such as those provided by the medical professionals, are not subject to tax. However, this is not relevant in determining the taxability of the staffing services provided by the employment agencies. The nature of services provided by personnel furnished by a staffing agency has no bearing on the taxability of the staffing service. (Decision Nos. 10-079 RC, 10-081 RC, & 10-082 RC, West Virginia Office of Tax Appeals, June 30, 2011)


West Virginia has issued guidance on amendments to the tax code section that governs a contractor’s right to assert exemptions to which the principal is entitled. The most recent amendment (S.B. 247, Laws 2011) allows contractors to, if the purchaser of the contractor services is entitled to, claim an exemption for purchases of specified tangible personal property that is installed in, or directly used or consumed in, the construction or expansion of a qualifying warehouse or distribution facility that employs at least 300 full-time employees. Contractors may claim the exemption by filing a refund claim after paying the sales tax, or using Form WV CST-286 (Special Contractors Exempt Purchase Certificate) if the principal has a direct pay permit. This exemption does not apply to purchases of gasoline or special fuel. The guidance document also reviews the application of the refundable exemption enacted in 2007 for specified contractor and subcontractor purchases. (Administrative Notice, West Virginia State Tax Department, November 3, 2011)


West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin III has vetoed House Bill 4521, a bill that was termed the Second Amendment Appreciation Act for providing a state sales tax holiday for the purchase of firearms. The governor stated loss in sales tax revenues and noncompliance with the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax (SST) Agreement as reasons for the veto. (News Release, West Virginia Gov. Joe Manchin III, April 2, 2010


The West Virginia Office of Tax Appeals found that the former corporate officer of a company was not personally liable for consumers' sales and service tax and assessment tax as he was not a "responsible person" for assessment purposes. The former corporate officer incorporated and acted as the president until giving control of the company to other family members. The court found that he had left the business 10 years prior to the assessment period and it was his son who had signed and filed the incorrect tax returns. As a result of this, the previous owner was found not to be a "responsible person" and could not be imposed with the outstanding tax liability. (Decision Nos. 09-002 & 09-003 W, West Virginia Office of Tax Appeals, February 3, 2010)


In the revised publication, the West Virginia Department of Revenue explains a Voluntary Disclosure Agreement as an opportunity for qualified businesses and individuals to come forward and comply with State tax laws in exchange for a waiver of civil or criminal penalties or prosecution. Additionally, the State may agree to limit the number of returns to be filed, waive penalties, or not audit, assess or demand payment of taxes prior to the look-back period. Although the look-back period is determined by the specifics of the case, it is generally no less than three years. To request an Agreement, the a written, dated request must be made that includes the type of business, activities conducted generally and specifically in West Virginia, types of taxes to be disclosed and those currently being filed, and the relief sought.

Taxpayers qualify for this program if they have not registered or filed a return, been contacted by the Department of Revenue or Multi-State Commission on behalf of West Virginia, and are not under audit or investigation by the Department. Additionally, the taxpayer must agree to disclose all applicable taxes, register and obtain a valid business registration certificate and register with the Secretary of State’s Office (if not a sole proprietor or general partnership). (TSD-412, West Virginia State Tax Department, November 2009)



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