Massachusetts Tax Free Weekend 2020: What You Need to Know

The state's annual sales tax holiday takes place on Saturday, Aug. 29 and Sunday, Aug. 30

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The annual Massachusetts sales tax holiday for 2020 takes place this Saturday, Aug. 29 and Sunday, Aug. 30. Retail items up to $2,500 purchased in Massachusetts for personal use on these two days are exempt from state's 6.25% sales tax.

Here's everything you need to know about the annual tax free weekend:

When did it start?

The tax free weekend has been held in most years since 2004, but legislation was signed into law in 2018 that officially established an annual sales tax holiday for one weekend each year. On the sales tax holiday weekend, purchases by individuals of most retail items are not subject to the state sales tax.

The sales tax holiday applies to individuals purchasing retail items for personal use. Purchases by corporations or other businesses -- or purchases by individuals for business use -- remain taxable.

Do all retail items qualify?

Meals, motor vehicles, motor boats, telecommunications services, gas, steam, electricity, tobacco products, marijuana, alcoholic beverages and any item with a price of more than $2,500 do not qualify. If you spend more than $2,500 on an item, the entire amount paid is subject to sales tax. Layaway sales are also ineligible for the sales tax holiday exemption.

What about internet sales?

If you order and pay for an eligible item over the internet on the sales tax holiday, that item will qualify for the sales tax holiday exemption. No sales tax is due, even if delivery of the item occurs after the sales tax holiday weekend.

How about rentals?

As long as the items rented are not ineligible items like motor vehicles or motor boats, individuals can take advantage of the sales tax holiday for rentals of up to 30 days. But the rental must be paid for in full on the holiday weekend.

Do all retailers have to participate?

All businesses normally making taxable sales in Massachusetts or to purchasers in Massachusetts that are open for business on Aug. 29 and Aug. 30 must participate in the sales tax holiday, including internet vendors.


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