Consumer Use Tax
What is the Consumer Use Tax?
Consumer use tax must be paid by Colorado residents and businesses on purchases that did not include Colorado sales tax, such as those made over the Internet, by mail order, or by telephone. Consumer use tax is payable to the state by individuals and businesses when sales tax is due but has not been collected. Individuals and businesses have always been required to pay sales or use tax on taxable purchases from out-of-state vendors if the item is sold, leased, or delivered in Colorado for use, storage, distribution, or consumption in the state.
Colorado state use tax is the same rate as the sales tax, 2.9 percent. With proof of payment, sales tax paid to another state may be credited against state use tax due in Colorado for a particular item. Use tax is also collected by some local governments and special districts.
How do Individuals Pay the Tax?
Consumer use tax can be paid by individuals on an annual basis, similarly to how you file your individual income tax return. Any merchandise purchased January to December that is subject to consumer use tax is due by April 15th the following year.
File the tax and make the payment through Revenue Online. Under FOR INDIVIDUALS, choose "File a Return" then "Consumer Use Tax." Revenue Online will let you know which local use taxes are required and will give you the appropriate tax rates.
If filing by paper, the state and special district use taxes are filed using the DR 0252, Consumer Use Tax Return. The Rural Transportation Authority uses tax is filed using form DR 0251, RTA Consumer Use Tax Return. For more information about state and special district taxes please see the DR 1002, Sales and Use Tax Rates.
How do Businesses Pay the Tax?
If your total use tax owed is less than $300 per year, the return is filed on an annual basis, due on January 20 of the following year. If total tax owed exceeds $300 at the end of any month, the return is due by the 20th of the following month.
You can use Revenue Online to file and pay. Or, if filing by paper, the state and special district use taxes are filed using the DR 0252, Consumer Use Tax Return. The Rural Transportation Authority uses tax is filed using form DR 0251, RTA Consumer Use Tax Return. For more information about state and special district taxes please see the DR 1002, Sales and Use Tax Rates.
Local City and County Use Tax
All other state-collected cities and counties in Colorado collect their own use tax, when applicable, on building material and/or motor vehicle purchases. Home-rule cities that collect their own local sales taxes should be contacted directly for their tax laws and regulations. For more information on state-collected local jurisdictions and/or which cities administer their own taxes and how they may be contacted, please see the DR 1002, Sales/Use Tax Rates.
Information for Retailers
Non-Collecting Retailer Reporting Requirements -- (Updated February 19, 2014)