As a nonprofit organization, you have the option to take advantage of your state’s tax exemption status for sales taxes. This exemption will allow your organization to not have to pay sales taxes on purchases. This is a great way to save on the almost 10% sales tax here in Tennessee. However, are you or your staff guilty of tax evasion?
As an accountant, I am often making purchases for our nonprofit clients. I have copies of all the necessary documents in order to save our clients sales taxes. Your organization may have staff such as Program Managers or Executive Directors that has an exemption card with their name on it because of their frequent purchases for the organization. Over the years, we have encountered countless times where staff members have been using the agency’s tax exemption card to save money on personal purchases. However, this is illegal and unethical to use the agency’s tax exemption card for personal use. The consequences could be years in prison and large fines for the State of Tennessee in addition to possibly losing some of your civil rights, such as the right vote or carry a firearm. Contact your state’s sales tax division to determine your state’s consequences. Read more