Are sales tax dischargable in bankruptcy?

Asked over 1 year ago - New York, NY

I was hit with a huge bill for sales taxes many years ago. If I file chapter 7, can I discharge these?

Attorney answers (7)

  1. Michael Hal Schwartz


    Contributor Level 16


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . It depends on the State. In some states, sales taxes are considered "excise taxes" and are dischargeable. In most states including New York, sales taxes are "trust fund taxes" and NOT dischargeable.

  2. Walter C Oney Jr

    Contributor Level 17


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Further to what Atty Schwartz has said, sales taxes are typically "trust fund" taxes that a vendor collects from the purchaser and holds "in trust" to pay to the state. If you collected the sales taxes from your customers, I'm sure you understand why you can't discharge your obligation to pay them over to the state. If you did NOT collect taxes when you should have, your remedy is to seek an abatement of the tax. You would need to retain someone who specializes in NY sales tax issues to help you with that.

  3. Glenn Michael Anderson


    Contributor Level 3


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . When you collect taxes for a govenement entity, that is referred to as "trust fund" taxes. If instead of remiitting those trust fund taxes you do something else with that money, that debt is not generally dischareable in bankruptcy.

  4. Gary D. Bollinger

    Contributor Level 19


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . "Sales Tax" can be taxes
    That you owe on a purchase you made (a car purchase, for example), or taxes that you, as a vendor/Seller were required to collect and turnover.

  5. Gregory David Verdibello

    Contributor Level 10


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . In NYS the answer is no, sales tax is not dischargeable. However, sales tax is dischargeable in some other jurisdictions, so you will want to check with a local attorney.

    This material does not constitute tax, legal or accounting advice. It was not intended or written for use and... more
  6. Julio E Portilla


    Contributor Level 9


    Lawyer agrees

    Answered . In NY Sales Tax are not dischargeable. Sales tax are considered trust funds in favor of the government. These are taxes you collect from the purchaser and hold in trust to pay the state.

  7. Alan James Brinkmeier

    Contributor Level 20


    Lawyers agree

    Answered . Money debt owed to the government will not go away

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