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PSA: You are exempt from WA state tax for EVSE (HPWC) installations - and for the HPWC itself!

zmarty

Member
Jun 25, 2017
220
655
Kirkland, WA
In Washington State, if you are paying an electrician to install an EVSE like the Tesla Wall Charger, you should not pay State tax.

Please refer to RCW 82.08.816 to check for yourselves. I called the Department of Revenue for Washington State today to confirm this. They agreed I should not have paid tax for my HPWC installation. They told me to give my electrician this BUYERS’ RETAIL SALES TAX EXEMPTION CERTIFICATE form. In that form at the top fill in the details about your electrician, then check box 2b, then at the bottom check Individual, fill in your name and address, and sign. That's it.

My electrician agreed to refund me the tax.

Couple of other interesting things:
  • The Tesla shop also charged me tax for the HPWC so I filled in another form and sent it to [email protected]. Will update this thread with their reply.
  • If you look at the RCW, or you look in the form under box 2a, it seems the batteries inside electrical vehicles are also tax exempt. Very interesting, should investigate this further.
 

DinoJuice

Member
Mar 25, 2018
55
42
Bellevue
Definitely curious how this is panning out. I'm working on scheduling my electrician now and already procured a wall-charger from the online store.

Nick
 

zmarty

Member
Jun 25, 2017
220
655
Kirkland, WA
Definitely curious how this is panning out. I'm working on scheduling my electrician now and already procured a wall-charger from the online store.

Nick

The update is that the electrician did mail me a check for the installation tax, but Tesla is MIA for the Wall Charger tax refund. I already sent them two e-mails. I will probably have to call them and waste my time.
 

zmarty

Member
Jun 25, 2017
220
655
Kirkland, WA
Since the Tesla Shop e-mail did not reply, today I sent a message to Tesla about the Wall Charger tax from inside the My Tesla website. Will keep you posted.
 

zmarty

Member
Jun 25, 2017
220
655
Kirkland, WA
Here is an update: After contacting Tesla Shop by e-mail twice, and after contacting once through the Tesla account contact form, I decided to go for the nuclear option and the fourth time I checked the "Executive Escalation" checkbox. Within one day they answered with this:

"...I've sent a request to our finance and online orders team to process a refund for the tax paid on this charger. Thanks for letting us know..."

Will let you know if they actually refund me.
 

zmarty

Member
Jun 25, 2017
220
655
Kirkland, WA

ChadS

Last tank of gas: March 2009
Jul 16, 2009
3,344
2,721
Redmond, WA
I told them the same thing several years ago (2013?). They gave me a refund, but don't seem interested in fixing the process.
 

jhei

Member
Jan 29, 2020
26
44
Seattle
Good news! I can confirm that Tesla has in refunded me the tax I paid for the Wall Charger.
I am wondering if you have to fill in the same form and send it to Tesla in order to get the tax refund. Even up until this moment, the online shop is still charging sale tax for WA customer.
 

TunaBug

Member
Mar 27, 2021
51
40
Kirkland, WA
I'm researching charger installs after placing an order for a Model 3 last night. Thanks for this thread!

IANAL, but looking through RCW 82.08.816, it says (highlighting by me):

(2) Sellers may make tax exempt sales under this section only if the buyer provides the seller with an exemption certificate in a form and manner prescribed by the department. The seller must retain a copy of the certificate for the seller's files.

While I don't like that, it sounds like the law says that I (the buyer) have to provide the exemption certificate to the seller. I think that implies that no certificate means they still have to collect tax. So, bad as it is, perhaps requesting a refund is the only option for an online retailer. Try putting charger products into your Amazon cart: you'll be charged sales tax there, too.
 

LeafRider

New Member
May 18, 2021
1
0
Seattle
I'm researching charger installs after placing an order for a Model 3 last night. Thanks for this thread!

IANAL, but looking through RCW 82.08.816, it says (highlighting by me):



While I don't like that, it sounds like the law says that I (the buyer) have to provide the exemption certificate to the seller. I think that implies that no certificate means they still have to collect tax. So, bad as it is, perhaps requesting a refund is the only option for an online retailer. Try putting charger products into your Amazon cart: you'll be charged sales tax there, too.
I ordered an EVSE online from ClipperCreek for shipping to WA. Originally the shopping cart showed sales tax, but after I filled out the shipping/billing info it disappeared and I was never charged the tax. So at least some retailers seem to be doing it right? I didn't need to anything with the exemption certificate.
 

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