SALT Report 2501 – The Wisconsin Department of Revenue updated their guidance regarding the application of sales and use tax to non-motorized campers when purchased by non-residents. Generally, Wisconsin retailers are required to collect the 5% state sales taxes if the non-resident takes possession of the camper in Wisconsin. If the camper is located in a jurisdiction that imposes tax they will be required to collect the local taxes as follows:
For the sale of a recreational vehicle such as a travel trailer or fifth-wheel trailer, the retailer must collect county and stadium taxes based on the location in which the non-resident will primarily keep the camper in Wisconsin. However, if the non-resident will not keep the camper in Wisconsin, the retailer will not be required to collect the county and stadium taxes.
For the sale of a camping trailer such as a pop-up camper, tent camper, or truck camper, the retailer must collect county and stadium tax based on the location in which the non-resident takes possession of the camper from the retailer in Wisconsin. However, if the non-resident takes possession in a county that does not impose a county or stadium tax, the retailer will not be required to collect county or stadium taxes.
The non-resident purchaser will owe county or stadium use tax if, after taking possession from the retailer, the camper is used or stored by the non-resident in a taxable county. In this case, the retailer may voluntarily collect the county or stadium use tax due by the nonresident and remit t to the Department.
Private Party Sales
If the sale involves private parties, the individual seller will not be required to collect state or local taxes when selling their personal camper. Additionally, if the non-resident purchaser does not register or title the camper with the Wisconsin Department of Transportation, and they are not required to, the non-resident will not owe any tax if they purchase a camper from a seller who does not have, and is not required to have, a Wisconsin seller’s permit.
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