South Carolina: Sales Tax Handbook
South Carolina Sales Tax Rate
|State Sales Tax||Local Sales Tax Range||Average Local Tax||Average Combined Tax||Max Combined Tax|
|6%||0% - 3%||1.539%||7.539%||9%|
2020 South Carolina Sales Tax Handbook
South Carolina Table of Contents
- List of Local Sales Tax Rates
- Sales Tax Calculator
- Sales Tax Exemption Certificates
- Sales Tax Info For Businessowners
- Taxable vs. Non-Taxable Purchases
- Sales Tax on Cars & Vehicles
- More Information
South Carolina's Sales Tax By The Numbers:
South Carolina has a higher-than-average sales tax, including when local sales taxes from South Carolina's 116 local tax jurisdictions are taken into account.
Rankings by Average State + Local Sales Tax:
Ranked 15th highest by combined state + local sales tax
Ranked 40th highest by per capita revenue from state + local sales taxes ($702 per capita)
Rankings by State Sales Tax Only:
Ranked 8th highest by state sales tax rate
Ranked 33rd highest by per capita revenue from the statewide sales tax ($674 per capita)
Printable PDF South Carolina Sales Tax Datasheet
South Carolina has a statewide sales tax rate of 6%, which has been in place since 1951.
Municipal governments in South Carolina are also allowed to collect a local-option sales tax that ranges from 0% to 3% across the state, with an average local tax of 1.539% (for a total of 7.539% when combined with the state sales tax). The maximum local tax rate allowed by South Carolina law is 3%. You can lookup South Carolina city and county sales tax rates here.
This page provides an overview of the sales tax rates and laws in South Carolina. If you are a business owner and need to learn more about things like getting a sales tax permit, filing a sales tax return, or making tax-exempt purchases for resale see the South Carolina Sales Tax Handbook's Table of Contents above.
What is exempt from sales taxes in South Carolina?
Many states have special sales tax rates that apply to the purchase of certain types of goods, or fully exempt them from the sales tax altogether. Here's how South Carolina taxes five types of commonly-exempted goods:
For more details on what types of goods are specifically exempt from the South Carolina sales tax see South Carolina sales tax exemptions. To learn more about what types of transactions are subject to the sales tax to begin with, see what purchases are taxable in South Carolina? Taxation of vehicle purchases in particular are discussed in the page about South Carolina's sales tax on cars.
Are services subject to sales tax in South Carolina?
"Goods" refers to the sale of tangible personal property, which are generally taxable. "Services" refers to the sale of labor or a non-tangible benefit. In South Carolina, specified services are taxable.
About the South Carolina Sales Tax
The state of South Carolina has relatively simple sales tax rate, and utilizes a flat state tax rate. However, in addition to the flat state tax rate, there are county taxes or local city taxes, which will vary significantly depending on which jurisdiction you are in. These local tax rates would be in addition to the state rate.
Is the South Carolina Sales Tax Destination-Based or Origin-Based?
South Carolina is a destination-based sales tax state, which means that sales tax rates are determined by the location of the buyer when the transaction is completed. This means that, for orders placed via the internet/mail by a customer within South Carolina from a South Carolina vendor, the vendor must collect a sales tax rate applicable at the buyer's address (including any applicable local sales taxes). This can significantly increase the complication of filing your sales tax return, because different sales tax rates must be charged to different buyers based on their location.
Is South Carolina a Streamlined Sales Tax State?
South Carolina is not a member of the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement. The SSUTA is an agreement adopted by about half of states that ensures that their sales tax laws are simplified to lower the costs associated with compliance.
Contact the South Carolina Department of Revenue
The South Carolina Sales Tax is administered by the South Carolina Department of Revenue. You can learn more by visiting the sales tax information website at dor.sc.gov.
Phone numbers for the Sales Tax division of the Department of Revenue are as follows:
- Local Phone: (803) 898-5000
Learn More: Our Book Recommendations
If you would like to learn more about how to manage your South Carolina sales taxes, we recommend the following books:
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South Carolina Sales Tax Rates by Zip Code:
Need an updated list of South Carolina sales tax rates for your business? Download our South Carolina sales tax database!