Sellers Using “Merchant Model” Must Collect Tax on Full Sales Price in Wyoming Effective January 1, 2015

Effective January 1, 2015, any person or business that books hotel rooms in Wyoming utilizing the “merchant model” must be licensed as a vendor with the state and must collect and remit Wyoming sales and lodging taxes on the full sales price paid to them by customers for all room reservations sold. Under the “merchant model,” a hotel offers its lodging services to the business at a discounted rate and the business sells those services to its customers at a higher rate. Due to a prior court decision, online travel companies (OTCs) and other business may no longer pay Wyoming taxes on the discounted rate that hotels offer to the OTCs. For our previous news item on this, visit Online Travel Companies Liable for Tax on Total Amount Paid by Customers in Wyoming. Upon applying for and receiving a Wyoming sales/use tax license, the business will purchase rooms from the hotel on a wholesale for resale basis without paying sales or lodging tax. The business will then collect sales and lodging taxes from their customers on the full retail sales price paid for the room reservations. To purchase on a wholesale for resale basis, the business must supply the hotel with a Streamlined Sales and Use Tax (SST) Agreement certificate of exemption.(Notice to Businesses Selling Hotel Accommodations in Wyoming Utilizing the “Merchant Model,” Wyoming Department of Revenue, released October 20, 2014)

Posted on November 21, 2014