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Why are there duplicate County and City jurisdictions in my reports?

Overview

You run a Tax Return report and notice duplicate jurisdictions, one with a 0% tax rate and one with the actual tax rate. This did not used to happen.

Environment

Avalara AvaTax

Resolution

  • This is happening because of a change in reporting and transaction view that was made in October 2015.
    • Prior to this 0% rates due to Seller's Use Tax, in states like Arizona, were completely missing from the transaction breakdown.
    • We have since added the 0% rate to display, as the County jurisdiction with a tax rate of 0%
  • This means that you will sometimes see two of each county, if you're calculating both sales and seller's use on separate transactions.
    • The 0% value in your reports will be attributed to all transactions that were Seller's Use in that state.
    • The repeated County jurisdiction with an actual percentage of tax will be attributed to all transactions that were intra-state and calculated as Sales Tax
  • You can also see two jurisdictions, one with a 0% tax rate, if your transaction is partially taxable.
    • For example, you calculate tax on a transaction with a Manufacturing exemption in Missouri. Manufacturing exemptions are tax exempt at the State jurisdiction and have reduced rates at the local jurisdictions.
      • When you view the report, you will see two MO State jurisdictions: one with a 0.0% tax rate for the tax exempt transactions and one with the full state tax rate for the fully taxable transactions.
    • Another example can occur in Washington state.
      • When your address falls within a Washington City jurisdiction, you calculate State and City tax.
      • The reverse is also true, if the address falls outside the City jurisdiction, you will only calculate WA State and County tax
      • So you may pull a Tax Return report and see two County or two City jurisdictions, one with the 0.0% tax rate and one with the full tax rate.