New Rules to Impact How Virginia Businesses Pay Taxes

(Richmond, Virginia)In a move that’s sure to surprise at least a few Virginia retailers, the state government  announced recently that it will only accept electronic payments of sales tax.  The new policy, which was passed as part of the Commonwealth’s new budget, goes into effect in July.  VRMA is advocating on behalf of retailers to ensure a smooth transition to electronic-only filing and making sure that no retailer is penalized if they are unable to comply on time.

“This is a new policy that a lot of our retailers are likely unaware of, and it’s a policy that some of them may find difficult to follow at first,” said Virginia Retail Merchants Association Director of Government Affairs Jodi Roth.  “In some rural areas, it’s still impossible to get a reliable Internet connection.”

Business owners are being informed about the requirement via a mailing from the Virginia Department of Taxation.  Businesses should receive the brochure in the next two weeks.

Retailers who pay sales taxes on a monthly basis are required to file and pay electronically beginning with the July 2012 return, which is due August 20, 2012.  Retailers who file on a quarterly basis will be required to file and pay electronically beginning with the July–September 2013 return, due October 20, 2013.  To be considered an “on time” payment, returns must be submitted on or before the due date.  Pre-printed sales tax return coupons will no longer be mailed to business owners.

Fortunately, business owners who are unable to comply with the new filing policies before their next payment is due can file for a temporary waiver.  Instructions on how to file electronically or request a waiver are included in the mailer being sent by the tax department.  For more information, retailers can contact the Virginia Department of Taxation at (804) 367-8037 or go to

About VRMA
The Virginia Retail Merchants Association was established in 1905.  VRMA is a not-for-profit trade association representing retailers to educate, inform, and serve as a resource. VRMA and its member associations represent more than 5,400 retailers and other associated businesses throughout the Commonwealth of Virginia.  For more information, please visit

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