By Mary Alexander and Andrew Appleby

The Missouri Department of Revenue determined that a Missouri-based seller was required to collect and remit sales tax on sales to a Missouri-headquartered customer despite the fact that the items were shipped to the customer’s out-of-state locations. The seller fulfilled the orders by delivering the purchased items to a common carrier on the customer’s account and was not responsible for items lost in transit. Missouri Regulation 12 CSR 10-113.200 provides that a sale of tangible personal property is subject to sales tax if “title to or ownership of the property transfers in Missouri unless the transaction is in commerce.” Under Regulation 12 CSR 10-113.200(3)(A), title transfers “when the seller completes its obligations regarding physical delivery of the property….” Because the seller had no obligation to deliver the items outside of Missouri, i.e., the orders were delivered to the common carrier in Missouri under the customer’s account, the Department determined that the seller completed its delivery obligations by delivering the purchased items to the common carrier. Thus, the Department concluded that Missouri sales tax applied because delivery to the customer occurred in Missouri. Mo. Private Letter Ruling, No. LR 7340 (Dec. 20, 2013).