Most Unusual Sales Tax Changes Last Year

The Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters has compiled its annual sampling of quirky sales tax changes passed or implemented in 2013.

Hungry for revenue, two Massachusetts cities increased the tax on meals from 6.25 percent to 7 percent. The cities? Sandwich and Salisbury.

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Straighter teeth just got cheaper in Arizona. Orthodontic devices are no longer subject to sales and use tax.

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Connecticut did away with its luxury tax on yachts, and tax is exempted all together if the boat is docked 60 days or less a year.

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In North Carolina, chiropractors must collect sales tax on nutritional supplements and vitamins provided as part of a patient’s treatment plan, and students must pay sales tax on meals purchased on college campuses.

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Rhode Island eliminated sales and use tax on wine and spirits sold at package and liquor stores from Dec. 1, 2013, through March 31, 2015.

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The legalization of recreational marijuana comes with a hefty tax. Both Washington and Colorado are taxing pot at a whopping 25 percent.

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In Washington state, hiring a personal chef is a taxable service, and the chef is required to collect sales tax. However, if a meal is prepared with raw or undercooked eggs, fish, meat or poultry and refrigerated or frozen for consumption at a later time, and cooked prior to consumption to prevent food-borne illness, then the tax is waived.

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Getting to work on time, whether it's at an accounting firm or another type of business, can be hard enough without the added obstacles imposed by car trunk thieves, gas station stick-ups and shower mishaps. Yet, these are exactly the types of incidents some workers claim prevented them from getting to work on time this year, according to a survey from CareerBuilder. When asked about the most outrageous excuses employees have given them for being late, employers shared the following:

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With minutes counting down to this year's tax deadline, clients (and many of their accountants) are scrambling to get paperwork wrapped up on time. But many financial and tax professionals caution that in the heat of the moment, even the most knowledgeable can forget the basics – never mind easy-to-miss, specialized strategies.

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