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Georgia Sales Tax Guide 2024: Compliance, Rates, and Regulations for Ecommerce Businesses

By 

Updated 

December 21, 2023

 Reviewed by 

Georgia levies a 4% statewide sales tax on the retail sale, lease, or rental of tangible personal property and selected services. Combined with local sales taxes, the total sales tax rate can reach 9% in some areas.

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Sales tax at a glance

State Tax Authority Georgia Department of Revenue
Georgia Base Sales Tax Rate 4%
Local Tax Rates 1-5%
2023 Georgia Sales Tax Rate 4-9%
Tax Threshold $100,000 in sales or 200 transactions
Website dor.georgia.gov
Tax Line (877) 423-6711

Georgia sales tax rates & calculations in 2023

The Georgia sales tax rate in 2023 is 4-9%, comprising a base rate of 4% plus a mandatory local rate between 1-5%. Depending on the local sales tax jurisdiction, the total tax rate can be as high as 9%.

You can look up the full table of sales tax rates in each city and county in Georgia here.

Recent tax rate changes in Georgia

Georgia's state and local sales tax rates have remained the same. The last rate change occurred on April 1, 2018, when the state-wide TAVT (title ad valorem tax) rate increased from 6.6% to 6.8%. Georgia remains one of the only

FAQs

How do you calculate Georgia sales tax?

As an ecommerce seller, here's how you calculate Georgia's sales tax: Add the 4% state tax plus the local tax rate based on the shipment or delivery address, then multiply the total rate by the purchase price. 

For example, if the local rate is 3% and the purchase price is $100, the sales tax would be $7.

What are the penalties for not paying Georgia sales tax?

Georgia can assess penalties of 5% per month up to 25% of the tax due. Interest accrues at 1% per month. Criminal sanctions are also possible for wilful violations.

Is Georgia a streamlined sales tax state?

Yes, Georgia is a Streamlined Sales Tax state member. It became an associate member of Streamlined Sales Tax on January 1, 2011, and a full member state on July 1, 2011.

Sales tax nexus table in Georgia

Type of Nexus Threshold
Physical presence Any physical presence
Economic nexus $100,000 in sales or 200 transactions
Nexus with marketplaces >$100,000 in sales facilitated by a marketplace
Payroll compensation None

FAQs

Do I need a Georgia seller's permit if I’m only a wholesaler?

Yes, wholesalers in Georgia require a sales tax permit unless all their sales are made exclusively to buyers who will resell the items and provide valid resale certificates.

Do I need a Georgia seller's permit if I only sell temporarily in the state?

Yes, even temporary selling trips into Georgia require a seller's permit and sales tax collection. Use the state's quick sales tax registration to file and remit the tax.

What's exempt from sales tax in Georgia?

Georgia provides sales tax exemptions for some specific goods and entities:

  • Prescription drugs & medical equipment
  • Groceries
  • Farm equipment
  • Energy used in manufacturing
  • Government entities
  • Non-profits with IRS 501(c)(3) status

FAQs

Are groceries taxable in Georgia?

No, most groceries are exempt from Georgia sales tax. However, prepared foods are still taxable even when purchased at a grocery store.

Is clothing taxable in Georgia?

All clothing purchases in Georgia are subject to the combined state and local sales tax rate at the point of sale. There are no apparel exemptions.

Are digital products taxable in Georgia?

Georgia considers specified digital products like music, movies, books, and software taxable. Other digitally delivered services are generally not taxable, though.

Is software-as-a-service (SaaS) taxable in Georgia?

SaaS and other online services are not subject to Georgia sales tax. Only digital products delivered electronically are taxable.

Are services taxable in Georgia?

Georgia taxes only a handful of specific services like computer services, maintenance contracts, and cable TV services. Most services are not subject to Georgia sales tax, though.

Food and beverage tax in Georgia

Georgia allows some municipalities and counties to impose an extra 1-3% sales tax specifically on food and beverages sold in restaurants and similar establishments.

Remote sellers in Georgia

Remote sellers with over $100,000 in Georgia sales or 200 transactions must register and collect Georgia sales tax. Use tax reporting requirements have also been enacted for non-collecting remote sellers.

Discretionary taxes in Georgia (local sales taxes)

Georgia has enabled cities and counties to levy numerous local-option sales taxes to fund various public facilities and special projects, resulting in over 500 separate local sales tax jurisdictions across the state.

Collecting sales tax in Georgia

Let’s look at the steps to collect sales tax in Georgia now.

How to collect sales tax in Georgia if you are not based in Georgia (Out-of-State)

Even if you do not have a physical presence in the state, you may still meet the economic nexus thresholds that require registering to collect Georgia sales tax. Specifically, you must register if you make over $100,000 in sales or complete over 200 transactions in Georgia in the current or previous calendar year.

Once registered, you must collect and remit sales tax on all taxable sales shipped to Georgia, regardless of whether you have a physical presence—the Georgia Department of Revenue guides out-of-state sellers on registering and understanding their obligations.

Some critical requirements for out-of-state sellers include:

  • Registering for a Georgia sales tax account
  • Charging, collecting, and remitting sales tax on shipments to Georgia buyers
  • Filing Georgia sales tax returns, even for periods with no sales
  • Keeping detailed records of transactions and exemptions

Marketplace facilitators and sellers also have specific requirements for reporting sales correctly. See the marketplace nexus rules here for more details.

Should you collect sales tax on shipping charges in Georgia?

Yes, Georgia requires ecommerce business owners and remote sellers to collect sales tax on delivery, transportation, shipping, and handling charges related to the sale of tangible personal property, regardless of whether these charges are separately stated or optional.

The only exception is when delivering non-taxable goods. Then, shipping and handling would not be subject to Georgia sales tax. See Rule 560-12-2-.110 for more information.

Filing and paying sales taxes in Georgia

All registered sellers in Georgia must file sales tax returns reporting their total sales and the sales tax collected. You can file your returns online through the Georgia Tax Center or submit paper Form ST-3.

When filing your Georgia sales tax return, you must:

  • Report your gross sales for the period
  • Calculate the total state and local sales tax collected
  • List any allowed deductions
  • Remit payment of the net tax owed for the period

Tax payments must be made simultaneously with return filing by the due date through electronic funds transfer or check.

Sales tax return filing schedule and due dates in Georgia

The Georgia DOR assigns a filing frequency to each business based on their anticipated taxable sales volume. This schedule is either monthly, quarterly, or annually.

Sales tax returns are due the 20th day following the end of the filing period. 

Specific 2023 due dates are as follows:

Monthly

Period Due Date
January February 20, 2023
February March 20, 2023
March April 20, 2023
April May 22, 2023
May June 20, 2023
June July 20, 2023
July August 21, 2023
August September 20, 2023
September October 20, 2023
October November 20, 2023
November December 20, 2023
December January 22, 2024

Quarterly

Period Due Date
January – March (Q1) April 20, 2023
April – June (Q2) July 20, 2023
July – September (Q3) October 20, 2023
October – December (Q4) January 20, 2024

Annual

Period Due Date
January – December January 22, 2024

Sales tax late filing penalties in Georgia

Georgia imposes a 5% monthly penalty of up to 25% of the tax due for filing late sales tax returns. 1% monthly interest also accrues on any unpaid tax. Willfully filing fraudulent returns can also result in criminal penalties.

FAQs

What are the Georgia sales tax due dates?

Georgia sales tax returns and payments are due on the 20th of the following month after the end of the filing period.

I didn’t collect any Georgia sales tax during this period. Do I still need to file a return?

Yes, every business must submit a sales tax return for each filing period, even if you did not collect or owe any sales tax.

Can I get an extension on filing my Georgia sales tax return?

You can submit a written request for a 30 to 60-day filing extension to the Georgia DOR before the expected due date. An extension on payment is only allowed with interest accruing, though.

Can I amend a Georgia sales tax return?

You can file an amended return in Georgia to correct errors or report additional tax due on a previous return. You must pay any extra tax owed plus applicable penalties and interest.

What is the penalty for filing and paying Georgia sales tax late?

Georgia imposes a penalty of 5% per month up to 25% maximum for late filing, late payment, or incorrect filing of sales tax returns. 1% monthly interest also applies to any unpaid tax.

Audit & appeals process

The audit & appeals process is a series of steps a business must go through if audited by the Georgia Department of Revenue (GDOR). The process begins with the auditor contacting the firm to schedule an audit.

The auditor will then thoroughly review the business's extensive records, books, invoices, bank statements, and tax returns from the last three years to determine if any sales tax was incorrectly reported or not paid.

Suppose the auditor finds any substantial discrepancies or suspicious issues. In that case, they will issue a detailed notice of proposed assessment (NPA) report with their findings and calculations of taxes, penalties, and interest owed.

The business then has 30 days to protest and appeal the findings formally. A conference will be scheduled to discuss the audit results with a GDOR representative. If the appeal is ultimately denied after negotiations, the business can further appeal by filing a petition in the Georgia Tax Tribunal or Superior Court.

Georgia sales tax audit process

The key steps in a Georgia sales tax audit are:

  1. Receive audit notice and prepare requested records
  2. Initial audit conference to go over scope
  3. In-depth auditor examination of documents and transactions
  4. Audit findings discussion
  5. Potential appeal with conference
  6. Final assessment and payment

What to expect during the audit?

In a Georgia sales tax audit, the auditor will thoroughly examine your financial statements, books, accounts, papers, records, memoranda, and other documents to verify you paid the correct sales tax. Expect to provide extensive documentation on your transactions, customers, product costs, payments received, and exemptions allowed.

The auditor has the right to copy or photograph any relevant records, so be prepared to gather and organize everything they request. The more upfront you are, the easier the process will be.

After the audit – Appealing the results

If you disagree with the audit assessment, you can contest the findings by:

  • Filing a written protest within 30 days
  • Requesting an appeals conference
  • Submitting documentation supporting your position
  • Negotiating for penalty abatement

Contesting audit findings often leads to reduced assessments or corrected errors. It allows you to explain questionable items or transactions before receiving a final bill.

Sales tax registration

Here are the steps for registering for sales tax in Georgia:

How to register for sales tax in Georgia

Register online for a Georgia sales tax account through the Georgia Tax Center. Provide your business information, including:

  • Business name, address, ownership details
  • Federal EIN
  • Nature of business activities
  • Projected monthly taxable sales

Once registered, you must charge, collect, report, and remit the proper sales tax on Georgia transactions. Use sales tax software or Form ST-3 for filing.

Registration requirements for online sellers in Georgia

Online sellers must register for Georgia sales tax if they:

  • Have over $100,000 in Georgia sales per year
  • Complete over 200 individual sales in Georgia per year
  • Use an online marketplace nexus in Georgia
  • Store inventory in Georgia

See Georgia's guidance for the latest remote seller rules.

Cost of registration for a Georgia sales tax license

There is currently no fee to obtain a Georgia sales tax registration. However, other business licensing fees may apply.

More information & contacts

For help with sales tax compliance in Georgia, contact:

  • Authority: Georgia Department of Revenue
  • Phone: (877) 423-6711
  • Website: dor.georgia.gov

Also, if you someone to manage your sales tax across states including Georgia, book a demo with Numeral and we'll show why our customers spend less than five minutes monthly on sales tax.

Sales tax at a glance

State Tax Authority Georgia Department of Revenue
Georgia Base Sales Tax Rate 4%
Local Tax Rates 1-5%
2023 Georgia Sales Tax Rate 4-9%
Tax Threshold $100,000 in sales or 200 transactions
Website dor.georgia.gov
Tax Line (877) 423-6711

Georgia sales tax rates & calculations in 2023

The Georgia sales tax rate in 2023 is 4-9%, comprising a base rate of 4% plus a mandatory local rate between 1-5%. Depending on the local sales tax jurisdiction, the total tax rate can be as high as 9%.

You can look up the full table of sales tax rates in each city and county in Georgia here.

Recent tax rate changes in Georgia

Georgia's state and local sales tax rates have remained the same. The last rate change occurred on April 1, 2018, when the state-wide TAVT (title ad valorem tax) rate increased from 6.6% to 6.8%. Georgia remains one of the only

FAQs

How do you calculate Georgia sales tax?

As an ecommerce seller, here's how you calculate Georgia's sales tax: Add the 4% state tax plus the local tax rate based on the shipment or delivery address, then multiply the total rate by the purchase price. 

For example, if the local rate is 3% and the purchase price is $100, the sales tax would be $7.

What are the penalties for not paying Georgia sales tax?

Georgia can assess penalties of 5% per month up to 25% of the tax due. Interest accrues at 1% per month. Criminal sanctions are also possible for wilful violations.

Is Georgia a streamlined sales tax state?

Yes, Georgia is a Streamlined Sales Tax state member. It became an associate member of Streamlined Sales Tax on January 1, 2011, and a full member state on July 1, 2011.

Sales tax nexus table in Georgia

Type of Nexus Threshold
Physical presence Any physical presence
Economic nexus $100,000 in sales or 200 transactions
Nexus with marketplaces >$100,000 in sales facilitated by a marketplace
Payroll compensation None

FAQs

Do I need a Georgia seller's permit if I’m only a wholesaler?

Yes, wholesalers in Georgia require a sales tax permit unless all their sales are made exclusively to buyers who will resell the items and provide valid resale certificates.

Do I need a Georgia seller's permit if I only sell temporarily in the state?

Yes, even temporary selling trips into Georgia require a seller's permit and sales tax collection. Use the state's quick sales tax registration to file and remit the tax.

What's exempt from sales tax in Georgia?

Georgia provides sales tax exemptions for some specific goods and entities:

  • Prescription drugs & medical equipment
  • Groceries
  • Farm equipment
  • Energy used in manufacturing
  • Government entities
  • Non-profits with IRS 501(c)(3) status

FAQs

Are groceries taxable in Georgia?

No, most groceries are exempt from Georgia sales tax. However, prepared foods are still taxable even when purchased at a grocery store.

Is clothing taxable in Georgia?

All clothing purchases in Georgia are subject to the combined state and local sales tax rate at the point of sale. There are no apparel exemptions.

Are digital products taxable in Georgia?

Georgia considers specified digital products like music, movies, books, and software taxable. Other digitally delivered services are generally not taxable, though.

Is software-as-a-service (SaaS) taxable in Georgia?

SaaS and other online services are not subject to Georgia sales tax. Only digital products delivered electronically are taxable.

Are services taxable in Georgia?

Georgia taxes only a handful of specific services like computer services, maintenance contracts, and cable TV services. Most services are not subject to Georgia sales tax, though.

Food and beverage tax in Georgia

Georgia allows some municipalities and counties to impose an extra 1-3% sales tax specifically on food and beverages sold in restaurants and similar establishments.

Remote sellers in Georgia

Remote sellers with over $100,000 in Georgia sales or 200 transactions must register and collect Georgia sales tax. Use tax reporting requirements have also been enacted for non-collecting remote sellers.

Discretionary taxes in Georgia (local sales taxes)

Georgia has enabled cities and counties to levy numerous local-option sales taxes to fund various public facilities and special projects, resulting in over 500 separate local sales tax jurisdictions across the state.

Collecting sales tax in Georgia

Let’s look at the steps to collect sales tax in Georgia now.

How to collect sales tax in Georgia if you are not based in Georgia (Out-of-State)

Even if you do not have a physical presence in the state, you may still meet the economic nexus thresholds that require registering to collect Georgia sales tax. Specifically, you must register if you make over $100,000 in sales or complete over 200 transactions in Georgia in the current or previous calendar year.

Once registered, you must collect and remit sales tax on all taxable sales shipped to Georgia, regardless of whether you have a physical presence—the Georgia Department of Revenue guides out-of-state sellers on registering and understanding their obligations.

Some critical requirements for out-of-state sellers include:

  • Registering for a Georgia sales tax account
  • Charging, collecting, and remitting sales tax on shipments to Georgia buyers
  • Filing Georgia sales tax returns, even for periods with no sales
  • Keeping detailed records of transactions and exemptions

Marketplace facilitators and sellers also have specific requirements for reporting sales correctly. See the marketplace nexus rules here for more details.

Should you collect sales tax on shipping charges in Georgia?

Yes, Georgia requires ecommerce business owners and remote sellers to collect sales tax on delivery, transportation, shipping, and handling charges related to the sale of tangible personal property, regardless of whether these charges are separately stated or optional.

The only exception is when delivering non-taxable goods. Then, shipping and handling would not be subject to Georgia sales tax. See Rule 560-12-2-.110 for more information.

Filing and paying sales taxes in Georgia

All registered sellers in Georgia must file sales tax returns reporting their total sales and the sales tax collected. You can file your returns online through the Georgia Tax Center or submit paper Form ST-3.

When filing your Georgia sales tax return, you must:

  • Report your gross sales for the period
  • Calculate the total state and local sales tax collected
  • List any allowed deductions
  • Remit payment of the net tax owed for the period

Tax payments must be made simultaneously with return filing by the due date through electronic funds transfer or check.

Sales tax return filing schedule and due dates in Georgia

The Georgia DOR assigns a filing frequency to each business based on their anticipated taxable sales volume. This schedule is either monthly, quarterly, or annually.

Sales tax returns are due the 20th day following the end of the filing period. 

Specific 2023 due dates are as follows:

Monthly

Period Due Date
January February 20, 2023
February March 20, 2023
March April 20, 2023
April May 22, 2023
May June 20, 2023
June July 20, 2023
July August 21, 2023
August September 20, 2023
September October 20, 2023
October November 20, 2023
November December 20, 2023
December January 22, 2024

Quarterly

Period Due Date
January – March (Q1) April 20, 2023
April – June (Q2) July 20, 2023
July – September (Q3) October 20, 2023
October – December (Q4) January 20, 2024

Annual

Period Due Date
January – December January 22, 2024

Sales tax late filing penalties in Georgia

Georgia imposes a 5% monthly penalty of up to 25% of the tax due for filing late sales tax returns. 1% monthly interest also accrues on any unpaid tax. Willfully filing fraudulent returns can also result in criminal penalties.

FAQs

What are the Georgia sales tax due dates?

Georgia sales tax returns and payments are due on the 20th of the following month after the end of the filing period.

I didn’t collect any Georgia sales tax during this period. Do I still need to file a return?

Yes, every business must submit a sales tax return for each filing period, even if you did not collect or owe any sales tax.

Can I get an extension on filing my Georgia sales tax return?

You can submit a written request for a 30 to 60-day filing extension to the Georgia DOR before the expected due date. An extension on payment is only allowed with interest accruing, though.

Can I amend a Georgia sales tax return?

You can file an amended return in Georgia to correct errors or report additional tax due on a previous return. You must pay any extra tax owed plus applicable penalties and interest.

What is the penalty for filing and paying Georgia sales tax late?

Georgia imposes a penalty of 5% per month up to 25% maximum for late filing, late payment, or incorrect filing of sales tax returns. 1% monthly interest also applies to any unpaid tax.

Audit & appeals process

The audit & appeals process is a series of steps a business must go through if audited by the Georgia Department of Revenue (GDOR). The process begins with the auditor contacting the firm to schedule an audit.

The auditor will then thoroughly review the business's extensive records, books, invoices, bank statements, and tax returns from the last three years to determine if any sales tax was incorrectly reported or not paid.

Suppose the auditor finds any substantial discrepancies or suspicious issues. In that case, they will issue a detailed notice of proposed assessment (NPA) report with their findings and calculations of taxes, penalties, and interest owed.

The business then has 30 days to protest and appeal the findings formally. A conference will be scheduled to discuss the audit results with a GDOR representative. If the appeal is ultimately denied after negotiations, the business can further appeal by filing a petition in the Georgia Tax Tribunal or Superior Court.

Georgia sales tax audit process

The key steps in a Georgia sales tax audit are:

  1. Receive audit notice and prepare requested records
  2. Initial audit conference to go over scope
  3. In-depth auditor examination of documents and transactions
  4. Audit findings discussion
  5. Potential appeal with conference
  6. Final assessment and payment

What to expect during the audit?

In a Georgia sales tax audit, the auditor will thoroughly examine your financial statements, books, accounts, papers, records, memoranda, and other documents to verify you paid the correct sales tax. Expect to provide extensive documentation on your transactions, customers, product costs, payments received, and exemptions allowed.

The auditor has the right to copy or photograph any relevant records, so be prepared to gather and organize everything they request. The more upfront you are, the easier the process will be.

After the audit – Appealing the results

If you disagree with the audit assessment, you can contest the findings by:

  • Filing a written protest within 30 days
  • Requesting an appeals conference
  • Submitting documentation supporting your position
  • Negotiating for penalty abatement

Contesting audit findings often leads to reduced assessments or corrected errors. It allows you to explain questionable items or transactions before receiving a final bill.

Sales tax registration

Here are the steps for registering for sales tax in Georgia:

How to register for sales tax in Georgia

Register online for a Georgia sales tax account through the Georgia Tax Center. Provide your business information, including:

  • Business name, address, ownership details
  • Federal EIN
  • Nature of business activities
  • Projected monthly taxable sales

Once registered, you must charge, collect, report, and remit the proper sales tax on Georgia transactions. Use sales tax software or Form ST-3 for filing.

Registration requirements for online sellers in Georgia

Online sellers must register for Georgia sales tax if they:

  • Have over $100,000 in Georgia sales per year
  • Complete over 200 individual sales in Georgia per year
  • Use an online marketplace nexus in Georgia
  • Store inventory in Georgia

See Georgia's guidance for the latest remote seller rules.

Cost of registration for a Georgia sales tax license

There is currently no fee to obtain a Georgia sales tax registration. However, other business licensing fees may apply.

More information & contacts

For help with sales tax compliance in Georgia, contact:

  • Authority: Georgia Department of Revenue
  • Phone: (877) 423-6711
  • Website: dor.georgia.gov

Also, if you someone to manage your sales tax across states including Georgia, book a demo with Numeral and we'll show why our customers spend less than five minutes monthly on sales tax.

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About the author

Deb Mukherjee

Deb is the head of marketing at Numeral. He has worked with the likes of Shopify and Wonderment and has helped countless ecommerce stores scale seamlessly. With a background in finance, he often finds himself advising stores on sales tax and good financial systems.

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