NC Sales and Use Tax Registration - Northwest Registered Agent (2024)

Posted on Admin | December 29, 2022

NC Sales and Use Tax Registration - Northwest Registered Agent (1)

Q: Do you help set up the tax resale certificate? If so, can you send me the instructions?

Thank you to a customer from North Carolina for that great question! Typically, North Carolina uses the term Certificate of Registration, also called a seller’s permit or sales and use tax license, to describe what you mean. A Certificate of Registration is issued by the North Carolina Department of Revenue and allows a business to collect sales tax from customers. A resale certificate, on the other hand, is a document that allows a business owner to purchase goods from a wholesaler to resell without paying sales tax. We’ll explain how to obtain both a Certificate of Registration and a resale certificate in North Carolina.

Applying For North Carolina Certificate of Registration

Before you can legally sell taxable goods in North Carolina, you need to register for sales and use tax with the North Carolina Department of Revenue and receive your Certificate of Registration. You can register through the NCDOR Online Business Registration portal, or by printing and mailing Form NC-BR to the Department of Revenue.

Here is the information you’ll need to have on hand to complete your registration:

  • Tax ID number (Either social security number or EIN)
  • Business name and address
  • Name, address, and SSN of person responsible for the business
  • Date when sales will begin
  • Whether sales will be retail, wholesale, or both
  • Business description
  • Items and services to be sold
  • Estimate of sales tax you expect to collect
  • Accounting method you will use, either cash or accrual
  • Months sales will be made (only for seasonal businesses)

After your application has been approved, you will be mailed your Certificate of Registration, Sales and Use Tax Account ID number, and your initial sales tax return.

Certificate of Registration Vs. Resale Certificate

A North Carolina Certificate of Registration, aka seller’s permit, is required before a business can sell taxable goods and services and collect sales tax from customers. While this license is often confused with a resale certificate, they are two different things.

A resale certificate, which in North Carolina is called a Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Exemption, is a document that a business owner fills out and gives to a wholesaler, permitting the wholesaler to sell items to the business owner without charging sales tax, with the understanding that the business owner plans to re-sell tem. For example, if you own a gift shop and purchase twenty snow globes from a wholesaler to resell, you would send your completed Certificate of Exemption to the wholesaler, who could then sell you the snow globes without sales tax. When you later resell the snow globes at your store, you’d collect sales tax from your customers.

Do I send my Certificate of Exemption to the North Carolina Department of Revenue?

No. The Certificate of Exemption is sent to the person selling you the products, not to the Department of Revenue. You should also keep a copy of the Certificate of Exemption with your business records.

Check out our meticulous guide to Starting a Business in North Carolina.

This entry was posted in Opinion.
NC Sales and Use Tax Registration - Northwest Registered Agent (2024)


How to calculate sales and use tax in NC? ›

How much is sales tax in North Carolina? The base state sales tax rate in North Carolina is 4.75%. Local tax rates in North Carolina range from 0% to 2.75%, making the sales tax range in North Carolina 4.75% to 7.5%.

Who should register for sales and use tax in NC? ›

Every business, person, or facilitator engaged in business in North Carolina of one or more of the following must register online or by mail with the Department to obtain a Certificate of Registration: Selling tangible personal property at retail. Selling and providing taxable services.

How to get a sales tax exemption certificate in North Carolina? ›

For information on exemption certificate procedures and exemption number requirements in North Carolina, see Section 52 of the Sales and Use Tax Technical Bulletins which can be found on the Department's website at, or you may contact the Taxpayer Assistance and Collection Center at 1-877-252-3052 (toll ...

Is there a fee for NC sales tax registration? ›

There is NO fee to apply for a certificate of registration in North Carolina. The department does not contract this service out to third parties. For accurate and reliable information about obtaining a North Carolina sales and use tax number, visit the Revenue Department's Sales and Use Tax webpage.

What is the easiest way to calculate sales tax? ›

Know the retail price and the sales tax percentage. Divide the sales tax percentage by 100 to get a decimal. Multiply the retail price by the decimal to calculate the sales tax amount.

Who has to pay sales & use tax in NC? ›

Every person engaged in business in North Carolina is required to collect and pay sales or use tax on retail sales or leases of tangible personal property and certain digital property not specifically exempt by law. Some services are also taxable.

Can I be my own registered agent in NC? ›

North Carolina law allows any consenting adult who is an NC resident to be your LLC's Registered Agent. That includes you, a friend, or a family member. Just know that anyone serving as your Registered Agent will have their address made public record as your registered office address.

What items are not taxed in NC? ›

Some goods are exempt from sales tax under North Carolina law. Examples include most non-prepared food items, food stamps, and medical supplies. We recommend businesses review the laws and rules put forth by the NCDOR to stay up to date on which goods are taxable and which are exempt, and under what conditions.

How to get a NC sales tax ID number? ›

The Online Business Registration system allows you to electronically register for a NC tax account ID number instead of submitting the paper Form NC-BR. Anyone seeking to register a business for the indicated tax types can use the Online Business Registration system to establish state tax ID number(s).

Does an NC sales tax exemption certificate expire? ›

Renewal period

In majority of states, including California, New York, North Carolina and Pennsylvania, exemption certificates do not expire.

How to fill out an NC resale certificate? ›

Then, you'll just need to print out form E-595E Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement Certificate of Exemption and do the following:
  1. Add your business name.
  2. Add your business address.
  3. Add your North Carolina tax ID number or FEIN.
  4. Check the appropriate option under “type of business”

How much is a reseller permit in NC? ›

There is no fee to register your business or use the resale license, but companies must keep a copy of your certificate on hand, so make sure to fill out your information completely.

How to calculate NC sales tax? ›

North Carolina has a state sales tax rate of 4.75%, with additional local option taxes that can raise the rate to as high as 7.5%. Our calculator takes into account the location of the transaction, ensuring accurate sales tax calculations every time.

Do I need a business license in NC? ›

Another part of what makes North Carolina a business-friendly state is that it doesn't require a general business license to do business. Instead, specific industries and occupations are regulated.

What state has the highest sales tax? ›

California ranks as having the highest sales tax in the US when considering California state tax only, but with an average combined rate of 8.851%, it skates by at number eight.

How do I find my NC sales and use tax number? ›

You can find your sales and use tax account ID number on your registration certificate or coupon booklet. You may also find your sales and use tax account ID number by entering your complete business name in the Department of Revenue's Sales and Use Taxpayer Database.

How do you calculate sales tax and price? ›

The formula for calculating the sales tax on a good or service is: selling price x sales tax rate, and when calculating the total cost of a purchase, the formula is: total sale amount = selling price + sales tax.

How is NC tax calculated? ›

Overview of North Carolina Taxes

North Carolina has a flat income tax rate of 4.75%, meaning all taxpayers pay this rate regardless of their taxable income or filing status. This can make filing state taxes in the state relatively simple, as even if your salary changes, you'll be paying the same rate.

How often do I file sales and use tax in NC? ›

When are quarterly and monthly sales and use tax returns due? Quarterly returns are due on or before the last day of January, April, July, and October for the preceding three-month period. Monthly returns are due on or before the 20th of the month following the end of the month.

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