The Department of Taxation and Finance has authorized a new policy pertaining to electronic versions of certain sales and use tax resale and exemption documents – e-certificates. Paper copies of these documents are still acceptable.
E-certificates are not available from the DOT. Purchasers and sellers can establish their own means to electronically issue and receive e-certificates. E-certificates must replicate the current paper resale or exemption form issued by the Department. The form does not have to look exactly like the paper form, but it must contain the language that is on the form. If a purchaser or seller wishes to use an e-certificate that has modified language, prior approval must be obtained from the Department of Taxation.
In addition to reproducing all of the language that is on the paper resale or exemption form, an e-certificate must contain specific e-certification and electronic signature language.
To be valid, a seller must accept in good faith an e-certificate that is properly competed within 90 days after delivery of the property or service. This includes the purchaser’s signature. With e-certificates, an electronic signature is required in lieu of a written signature, as required on its paper counterpart. An e-signature has the same validity and effect as a handwritten signature.
The same recordkeeping requirements for paper certificates also apply to e-certificates.
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