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Catering, Vending and Cooking For The Masses. this forum is OnTopic. A resource to help with catering, vending and just cooking for large parties. Topics to include Getting Started, Ethics, Marketing, Catering resources, Formulas and recipes for cooking for large groups.

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Old 05-03-2010, 03:11 PM   #1
is Blowin Smoke!

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Join Date: 06-14-07
Location: Huntington Beach, CA
Default Collecting sales tax

I am wondering if you guys have to collect sales tax for your catering jobs or if there is a easy way "around it". I realize that every state has different laws regarding this but I have tried speaking with our board of equalization and I'm getting mixed answers over the phone. I have an face to face appointment with them this wednesday but was hoping someone here could shed some light before I go.

We are starting a personal bbq chef company and plan to cook onsite only. I understand that if we choose to pay tax upfront on the meat and supplies then there is no need to charge additional tax to the customer since we are only providing the labor which is not taxable in CA.
Horizon 20" classic stickburner, Horizon Patriot grill, UDS by Norco, Backwoods Patio, Weber Spirit E-310
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Old 05-04-2010, 12:26 AM   #2
is one Smokin' Farker
Join Date: 10-19-07
Location: Oroville, CA

If you keep receipts from buying all of the supplies, and the customer reimburses you for the amount of the receipt---then you are cooking the customer's groceries. Then you can bill the customer for labor only. If you can prove that you paid sales tax when you bought your BBQ pit---then you can bill "BBQ pit rental" which is not taxable. If you did not pay tax on your pit---then you must charge sales tax when renting it. The problem with this mthod is that you can not make any profit from groceries and supplies---as you are just charging labor. It is hard to make money when just billing labor.

I have found that people resent paying sales tax---now that it is almost 10% in some counties. When I bill and add sales tax-----I do not get tipped usually. I usually just have the sales tax figured in to my quote and do not list it as "tax." When I do book keeping I subtract the tax out of the total sales price.
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Old 05-04-2010, 07:01 AM   #3
Bbq Bubba
somebody shut me the fark up.
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Join Date: 05-03-07
Location: New Baltimore, Mi.

That would be like the plumber charging sales tax to clean your drain.
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