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What are the new columns for risk levels on the rates files on salestax.avalara.com?

Overview

I see  some new columns on the rates files for download on salestax.avalara.com, and wondered what they mean

Environment

salestax.avalara.com

taxrates.com    

Resolution

  • This column is designed to help you understand how much risk you’re taking on by using ZIP codes to calculate rates.
  • When a tax rate in your table has a risk value of 1, this means the entire ZIP code is associated with a single city and county. This indicates a high likelihood that a single rate applies across the whole area.
  • Any ZIP codes with a higher number, however, are associated with multiple counties or cities — and the higher the number, the more boundary lines the ZIP code crosses. If you’re downloading rate tables to use for these ZIP codes, you may be exposing your business to significant risk at audit time and aggravating customers by overcharging them on items by as much as five or six percent.