Ohio sales tax refund claim remanded as the Board of Tax Appeals finds that sufficient evidence was presented to the Tax Commissioner.

The taxpayer, Pride of Cleveland Scooters, LLC, discovered that it had overpaid sales tax for three years due an error resulting in the company’s sales being inflated on its sales tax returns. It filed refund claims for three years and submitted evidence supporting the actual sales amount, including profit and loss statements, explanatory spreadsheets, and receipts from the Ohio Bureau of Motor Vehicles. The Tax Commissioner granted the refund claims for two years, but inexplicitly denied the refund for 2013 claiming the taxpayer failed to provide sufficient evidence supporting its amended sales tax return.

The taxpayer and Tax Commissioner stipulated to many of the relevant facts and reports at the hearing before the Board of Tax Appeals (BTA). Further, the taxpayer’s accountant testified at the hearing as how the correct sales amounts were determined for purposes of the refund claims. The only issue was whether Pride of Cleveland Scooters submitted sufficient evidence to establish how much it owed in sales tax for 2013. According to the Tax Commissioner’s regulation, proof to support a refund shown on an amended return “may consist of sales journals, cash registered receipts, summary reports or any other document used to prepare the tax return.” O.A.C. 5703-9-07(A)(3)(e). The BTA held that “sufficient evidence [was] provided [to the Tax Commissioner] to determine whether the taxpayer’s request for refund was proper.” Pride of Cleveland Scooters, LLC v. Testa, BTA Case No. 2016-375 (Apr. 11, 2017). Therefore, the claim was remanded to the Tax Commissioner for further consideration. “It’s unfortunate that we had to go to the Board of Tax Appeals to establish our case,” said attorney Steve Dimengo.

Pride of Cleveland Scooters was represented in this matter by Buckingham attorneys Steve Dimengo and Alex Campbell. Please contact us if you need help assembling the information required to support an Ohio sales / use tax refund claim.