California – Use Tax Voluntary Disclosure Program

SALT Report 3070 – The California State Board of Equalization released a publication that discusses the state’s use tax voluntary disclosure program.  If you think you may owe use tax because you purchased tangible personal property for use in the state, or if you are an out-of-state business that should be collecting use tax on your sales of tangible personal property to California consumers, you may be eligible for the voluntary disclosure program.

The publication discusses the two voluntary disclosure programs offered by the BOE.

The In-State Voluntary Disclosure Program is for in-state purchasers to report use tax on their purchases of tangible personal property from a retailer outside of the state.

The Out-of-State Voluntary Disclosure Program is for out-of-state businesses to report use tax on sales to consumers in California.

Both programs provide the following benefits:

  • Limits the time in which the BOE can make an assessment for use tax to the prior three years.  Without this program, this look-back period may be extended to eight years,
  • Allows the BOE to waive late filing and late payment penalties,
  • Allows an applicant to anonymously describe their circumstances and obtain a written opinion regarding whether the BOE will approve their voluntary disclosure request

Lastly, the publication provides specific information regarding each program, how to request a written opinion, and the application process.

For Further Information

California State Board of Equalization – Publication 178, Voluntary Disclosure Program