SALT Report 3216 –Excise Tax Advisory 3186.2014 addresses a lessee’s use tax payment responsibility. This most frequently occurs when a lessee puts to use leased property into Washington from outside the state. With certain exceptions detailed in the ETA the Washington use tax applies to the use of tangible personal property brought into the state. A lessee is responsible for paying Washington’s use tax unless a specific exemption applies.
In the case of leased property, the measure of use tax is the full amount of the lease payment for the lease period during which the property was used in Washington, unless that lease payment does not represent the true value for that period. The number of days or time spent in Washington is immaterial. If leased property is used in Washington during a lease period, use tax is due on the value for that entire lease period unless specific credit or exemption applies. The ETA goes on to provide an example regarding the use of an aircraft.
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