Sales Tax Secrets: 3 Must-know Mnemonics for Tax Managers

Everybody loves mnemonic devices! Unless you have a photographic memory, working in sales tax may mean using mnemonics to help keep the rules straight. Just like you’ve remembered “Please Excuse My Dear Aunt Sally,” “Every Good Boy Does Fine,” and perhaps “My Very Excellent Mother Just Served Us Nine…” Uh-oh, Pluto isn’t a planet anymore. Even the things you’ve devised never to forget change from time to time. Perhaps now we should say, “My Very Egocentric Mother Just Served Us Nothing.”

The cardinal mnemonic device of sales tax? NOMAD. This one, while it seems more likely to change than the classification of planets, is fairly easy to remember. It represents the states in which there is no sales tax: NH, OR, MT, AK, and DE. Don’t worry, we all get tripped up running through “M” states before we remember good old Montana. Here are additional sales tax mnemonics I’v created to help tax managers with product taxability:

States that exempt clothing – : “Victor Never Married, Never Met the Right Person”

VT, NJ, MA, NY, MN, RI, PA

States that exempt medicine: “Don’t Make Me Tax Vicks Vaporub, Please, For it’s Not Nice.”

DC, MD, MN, TX, VA, VT, PA, FL, NJ, NY

And the whopper, SST states: “Who? What? Where? I Know My Name, Age, Vocation, ‘N’ Number. I Know Now My New Girl’s Old Ride’s Still Under Water.”

WA, WI, WV, IN, KS, MI, NE, AR, VT, NJ, ND, IA, KY, NC, MN, NV, GA, OK, RI, SD, UT, WY

Sure it’s a mouthful, but hey, hopefully it’s quirky enough to stick. Admittedly, creating sales tax mnemonics isn’t exactly up there with knitting and chess in the world of popular hobbies, but when you’re dealing with such dry material, it’s definitely fun to take a break and punch things up a little. Feel free to give it a shot and share your own!

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