Florida— Taxability Of Simple Storage Service, Elastic Compute Cloud, And Data Transfer Fees

SALT Report 3392 – The Florida Department of Revenue (DOR) issued a Technical Assistance Advisement (TAA) in response to a request for the Department’s opinion on whether Florida Communications Service Tax and gross receipts tax (CST) and/or Sales and Use Tax (sales tax) apply to the sales of Simple Storage Service (S3), Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2), and data transfer fees.

The Taxpayer believes the sales of S3, EC2 services and data transfer fees are information services and not subject to the CST or sales tax.   According to the TAA, the DOR states, “Customers are not being sold the ability to “transmit, convey, or route …” data.  Customers purchase Internet access and telecommunication services from third parties.  As this service is the “… offering of a capability for … storing, … retrieving, using, or making available information via [a communications service]…,” it is properly classified as an information service.  Information services are excluded from CST.  The customer is not purchasing or being granted a license to use tangible personal property or real property. Therefore, the service is also not a sale subject to sales tax”.

For Further Information:

Technical Assistance Advisement – TAA 14A19-001