Occasional Sale Exemption

  1. What is the occasional sale exemption?
  2. What change was made to the occasional sale exemption starting January of 2018?
  3. If my sales qualify for the occasional sale exemption, can I still purchase the products that I sell without tax, for resale?
  4. If I expect to have less than $2,000 in sales of taxable products or services in the upcoming year, should I cancel my seller's permit?
  5. What if I cancel my seller's permit December 31, 2017, but my sales in 2018 are $2,000 or more?
  6. If I do not hold a seller's permit, and I make isolated and sporadic sales of $2,000 or more in 2018, am I liable for tax on all of my sales?

  1. What is the occasional sale exemption?

    Occasional sales of taxable products and services by a person who does not hold and is not required to hold a seller's permit may be exempt from Wisconsin sales tax. For example, an individual who holds a garage sale may qualify for the occasional sale exemption on his or her sales if the individual is not pursuing a vocation, occupation, or business as a vendor of taxable products.

  2. What change was made to the occasional sale exemption starting January of 2018?

    Starting with sales in 2018, a seller who has less than $2,000 in sales of taxable products or services in a calendar year is not required to hold a seller's permit. The law change presumes the seller is not pursuing a vocation, occupation, or business as a vendor of taxable products if that vendor's sales of taxable products or services do not exceed $2,000 in a year. Previously, the threshold was $1,000 in sales of taxable products or services in a year.

  3. If my sales qualify for the occasional sale exemption, can I still purchase the products that I sell without tax, for resale?

    No. If your sales are exempt occasional sales, you must pay tax on your purchase of the products that you sell.

  4. If I expect to have less than $2,000 in sales of taxable products or services in the upcoming year, should I cancel my seller's permit?

    You may want to review whether you expect to have less than $2,000 in taxable sales for the 2018 calendar year. If you expect that your sales of taxable products and services will be less than $2,000, you may inactivate your seller's permit. You will then be required to pay tax on your purchase of the products that you sell (i.e., if you qualify for the occasional sale exemption, you may not purchase the products that you sell without tax, for resale). Caution should be used, however, when inactivating your seller's permit. If your sales exceed the $2,000 threshold, you are liable for tax on all of your sales, including your first $2,000 of sales.

    If you do not inactivate your seller's permit, your sales are subject to tax, even if your taxable sales for 2018 are less than $2,000. If you hold, or are required to hold, a seller's permit, your sales are subject to sales tax. You may not retroactively cancel your seller's permit for purposes of claiming the occasional sale exemption.

  5. What if I cancel my seller's permit December 31, 2017, but my sales in 2018 are $2,000 or more?

    If your sales are $2,000 or more, you are liable for tax on all of your sales, including your first $2,000 of sales.

  6. If I do not hold a seller's permit, and I make isolated and sporadic sales of $2,000 or more in 2018, am I liable for tax on all of my sales?

    If you are not in the full or part-time business of selling taxable products or services and make isolated and sporadic sales of $2,000 or more, your sales may qualify for the occasional sale exemption. For example, an accountant who does not make sales of taxable products or services replaces its office furniture in 2018. The accountant sells its old office furniture for $3,000, which is its only sale of taxable products and services in 2018. The accountant's sale of the office furniture qualifies for the occasional sale exemption, since its sale of taxable products is isolated and sporadic.

​FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:

MS 5-77
WISCONSIN DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE
Customer Service Bureau
PO Box 8949
Madison, WI 53708-8949
Phone: (608) 266-2776
Fax: (608) 267-1030
Email: DORSalesandUse@wisconsin.gov

December 21, 2017