North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice

North Carolina Department of Justice
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Making the Most of Tax-Free Weekend

Friday, August 02, 2013

This weekend North Carolinians will be able to do some back-to-school shopping without having to pay sales tax.

If you plan to take advantage of Tax-Free Weekend, do your homework before you shop. The offer doesn’t apply to every purchase, so check the detailed list created by the the NC Department of Revenue to see which purchases are exempt from sales tax and which are not. Many items qualify, but only up to a certain amount.  For instance, school supplies with a price tag of $100 or less are exempt, but anything with a price higher than that is taxable.  (And you can’t use a manufacturer’s coupon or rebate to lower the price of an item to bring it within tax-exempt range.)

It’s also a good idea to do some research. Compare prices so you know whether or not you’re getting a good deal. This can help you avoid paying artificially inflated prices during tax free weekend.

Once you’ve made your purchase, check your receipt. Make sure the merchant didn’t accidentally charge sales tax for an item that was supposed to be exempt.  It will usually be easier to fix an error or overcharge immediately after you’ve made the purchase, rather than to return to the store later.    

If you’ve been the victim of an unfair business practice or a scam, contact the Consumer Protection Division of the Attorney General’s office at 1-877-NO-SCAM.  For more information on how to protect yourself, visit