Sales & Use Taxes on Online Purchases

Posted 4/01/13

Buyers beware......Wisconsin is getting serious about collecting sales tax on items purchased online without sales tax.  Generally, when purchases are made online, such as Amazon.com, Ebay, and other online stores, those purchases do not include sales taxes.  However, if you physically go to a store and buy similar items, the store is required to collect the appropriate sales tax.  You are required to track the total dollar purchases you have made online without the payment of sales tax and report the appropriate sales tax on this amount on your Wisconsin income tax return.  If that line is blank, you must certify that no sales or use tax is due by checking a box. 

Education Credits

Posted 3/10/13

Most students attending accredited colleges and universities will receive a 1098-T "Tuition Statement" indicating amounts paid or billed for tuition and related expenses.  If Box 2 "Amounts billed for qualified tuition..." is filled in instead of Box 1 "Payments received for qualified tuition..." you must obtain a statement or itemized listing of amounts billed and paid to properly determine how much of the billed tuition was actually paid.  The IRS rules require only amounts actually paid to be used when computing education credits.  The amounts reported as "billed" cannot be used for this purpose.

Standard Mileage Rates for 2013

Posted 3/01/13

Business ........... 56.5¢ per mile

Charitable ......... 14.0¢ per mile

Depreciation ....... 23.0¢ per mile

Medical & Moving .. 24.0¢ per mile

Payroll Taxes - Household Employees

Posted 1/02/13

For 2013, if you have a household employee, like a nanny, caregiver, or housekeeper, you must declare them and pay payroll taxes when cash payments total $1800 or more in a calendar year.  This is generally reportable on the household employer's Form 1040 Federal Income Tax return using Schedule H.  These wages may also be subject to Federal and State unemployment taxes as well as workers compensation insurance.

Online Sales

Posted 10/06/12

Selling online (such as via Ebay) is considered a taxable activity.  If you are a "casual seller", meaning you sell items occasionally without intent to make a profit, you probably don't need to report the activity.  If you are a more active seller, selling items at a profit or if you are selling collectibles, you must report the income either as a hobby or a business venture.