Virginia Bans Sales Tax Suppression Devices
- Apr 10, 2014 | Gail Cole
It seems a given that devices used to suppress records of sales transactions are less than legal. Tax zappers allow businesses to collect tax on sales transactions, erase the record of those sales, and then pocket the sales tax revenue instead of remitting it to the state. Yet if Virginia business owners had any doubts about the legality of tax zappers, let it be erased. Governor Terry McAuliffe (D) recently signed a law criminalizing automated sales suppression devices in Virginia.
Effective July 1, 2014, it will be a Class 1 misdemeanor “to willfully utilize any device or software to falsify the electronic records of cash registers or manipulate transaction records that affect any state or local tax liability.” Anyone caught using tax zappers will face a civil penalty of $20,000. ZAP!
Numerous states have taken steps to criminalize sales suppression devices. Most recently, Kentucky, Connecticut and California have made it officially illegal to use or possess tax zappers. States want businesses to remit the sales tax they collect, not pocket it.