This special report is based on the Legal Study of Florida’s Sales Tax on Services prepared by Professor Hellerstein, Prentiss Wilson, Jr., and Morrison & Foerster for the Florida Department of Revenue. This special report deals with the issues arising from Florida’s extension of the sales tax to cover services. The report first discusses the issue of pyramiding of taxes and explores the question of how that issue should be treated in the context of sales services in light of the pre-existing treatment of the issue in the context of sales of tangible personal property. Next, the problem of defining a taxable service is considered and a justification for excluding interest, insurance premiums, and receipts from other intangibles from the service definition is given. For services performed partly inside and partly outside Florida, the report discusses the decision to adopt an all-or-nothing approach to taxability rather than adopting a rule of apportionment for such sales of services. The report also examines the concept of a use tax on services and analyzes the constitutional objections that may be leveled against such a tax. The report concludes that the Legal Study should be viewed as an initial attempt to come to grips with the critical questions raised by Florida’s sales tax on services and should serve as a vehicle for further consideration of these issues.
Hellerstein, Walter, "Extending the Sales Tax to Services: Notes from Florida, 1987" (1987). Scholarly Works. Paper 875.