University of Washington Policy Directory

Print This Page
*Formerly part of the University Handbook
Administrative Policy Statement

State Sales and Use Tax

(Approved by the Executive Vice President by authority of Administrative Order No. 9)

1.  Policy

The University of Washington is required to pay sales tax on the majority of its purchases and collect sales tax on most of its sales of supplies and services (except for sales between University units and resale activities) in accordance with Chapter 82.08 RCW. For purchases, if sales tax is not collected by the seller and the good is to be used in the state of Washington, a use tax (equivalent to the sales tax) is then owed in accordance with Chapter 82.12 RCW and WAC 458-20-178. The current sales/use tax rate, which varies by taxing district, is available on the Department of Revenue website.

2.  Applicability of Tax on Purchases (For Buyers)

The UW Sales and Use Tax web page provides a description of type of sales that are excluded from sales tax, procedures used when sales tax is not added to paid purchases by invoice or card, and other requirements for recording and record maintenance.

3.  Applicability of Tax on Sales (For Sellers)

The state Department of Revenue web page provides a list of frequently asked questions for businesses selling goods and services. The UW Sales and Use Tax web page also provides examples of goods and services that are subject to tax and those that are not.

4.  Reporting Sales Tax on Sales by University Units

The Completing Cash Transmittal Forms web page explains how University units should report sales tax on sales, either on a cash transmittal or by the alternative method at month end.

5.  Reseller's Exemption Form Letter

The UW Tax Office Forms/Policies web page provides a form letter to send a supplier when a University unit is reselling the merchandise or material. On the web page, under the "Correspondence" heading, choose the "Sales Tax Status (Resale Certificate)" link.

6.  Additional Information

For taxation questions related to the sale of goods and services, please contact the Director of Financial Accounting and Reporting:

For taxation questions related to the purchase of goods and services, please contact the Assistant Director in Payables Administration:

March 1988; December 9, 2003.