Vermont – Safe Harbor Provision for Zappers Set to Expire

SALT Report 2835 – The Vermont Department of Revenue issued a notice regarding recently passed legislation that makes it a felony for anyone to possess, sell, purchase, install, or transfer automated sales suppression devices, also known as zappers.

The notice states that the legislation includes a safe harbor period until October 1, 2013. The safe harbor will allow anyone who uses zapper software to come forward without fear of prosecution under the law if they admit to using an automated sales suppression device, provide any information requested by the Department, and pay the Department any amounts owed. In addition, the penalty for using a zapper, which may be as high as 100% of the taxes owed, will be limited to a maximum of 25% of the taxes owed during the safe harbor period.

However, once the safe harbor has expired, violators will be subject to imprisonment for up to five years, fines of up to $100,000, or both.  In addition, the person will be required to pay all taxes, interest, and penalties due to the state of Vermont as the result of using a zapper.

In order to avoid prosecution, business owners using a zapper or a retailer selling zapper software must contact the Compliance Division at the Vermont Department of Taxes at (802) 828-2514 by October 1, 2013.

For Further Information

Vermont Department of Taxes – News Release