How do I file taxes for a special event or one-time sale?
If you have participated in a Special Event* or a one-time sale, please remit your taxes to the City of Lakewood on the special event sales tax reporting form. This form can be obtained by contacting the Finance Department at (303) 987-7630. If you do business on a more frequent basis, you need to obtain a City of Lakewood sales or use tax license.
*Special event participates may also file a return electronically via Lakewood Business Pro.
May I request a change in filing frequency?
Yes, filing status changes can be requested by mailing in a hard copy of the account change form or by submitting an online account change form via our website.
What information should I include in my refund request?
All refund requests must be submitted in writing and include:
Business name and address
Explanation of refund
How long will it take to receive my refund check?
If approved, you will receive your refund check within 2-3 weeks of the APPROVAL date.
May I fax my license application?
Taxpayers applying for a Use Tax only license may fax their application to the City because there is no fee associated with this license.
Sales Tax license applicants are subject to a $15 license fee that must be submitted with the application and therefore, these applications should not be faxed.
May I pay my licensing fee with a credit or debit card?
The City accepts cash and check for license application fees. ACH debit is also available for those applying online via Lakewood Business Pro.
How long will it take to receive my sales or use tax license?
Typically, it will take 2 weeks to approve your license. Once approved, your license will be mailed to you.
Do I need to renew my sales and use tax license?
You do not need to renew your sales and use tax license with the City of Lakewood. Your initial application fee of $15 is the only fee required, and your license will remain open until we receive written notification to terminate the account.
Do I need a City of Lakewood exempt license if I already have an exempt license for the state of Colorado?
Yes, you need a state of Colorado and a City of Lakewood exempt license to be exempt from all sales tax within Lakewood.
Do I need to renew my exempt license?
Yes, your exempt license must be renewed every five years.
What if I remit my City of Lakewood taxes to another jurisdiction?
All City of Lakewood taxes collected should be remitted to the City of Lakewood. If you have remitted Lakewood taxes to another jurisdiction, you will still need to send payment to the City of Lakewood. You will then need to contact the other jurisdiction to get a refund on the erroneous payment.
What is construction use tax?
Tax that is due on purchases of construction materials that will be incorporated into real property located within the City of Lakewood.
What is the construction use tax rate in the City of Lakewood?
What is taxable for construction jobs?
Construction materials and other tangible personal property used, stored or consumed in the City of Lakewood; shipping and delivery; rentals and leased equipment; and fabrication labor.
What is fabrication labor?
Any operation which results in the creation or production of an article of tangible personal property; an operation that changes the form or state of tangible personal property is one of fabrication; the tax applies to the total charges for the fabrication or production of an article of tangible personal property made to order.
Who is responsible for remitting construction use tax?
The general contractor who acquires the building permit; the subcontractors who complete work under the general contractor's building permit; the owner of the permitted property.
What is the construction use tax process?
A construction use tax deposit is paid on 50% of the estimated contract valuation when the building permit is issued. When the project is finished, a construction use tax reconciliation should be completed and remitted to the City with any additional construction use tax due-or a request for refund. A construction use tax audit may be engaged at any time, up to three years after the Certificate of Occupancy has been issued.
Which records should I keep and for how long?
All project records should be kept for a minimum of three years from the date the Certificate of Occupancy is issued. Project records should include the final contract between the general contractor and the owner, including any change orders; a list of subcontractors with their contact information and any subcontractor affidavits received; a detailed job-cost ledger; invoices for construction materials purchased by the general contractor, subcontractors and owner; and a copy of the AIA Certificate and/or final billing to owner.
What if my construction project is exempt?
If the owner is an exempt organization, a copy of the owner’s Lakewood exemption certificate should be provided at the time the building permit is issued.
May I request changes to my account on the phone?
No, all account changes must be submitted in writing. Changes can be sent via fax, email, or regular mail.
What is Lakewood's sales tax rate?
For most of Lakewood, the combined sales tax rate is 7.5%. This total is comprised of 3% to the City of Lakewood, 2.9% to the State of Colorado, 1.1% for RTD/CD and 0.5% to Jefferson County. In Belmar, the combined rate is 5.5% due to the City of Lakewood collecting 1% instead of 3% at this location.
How do I know if I owe use tax?
If you answer "yes" to all three of the following questions when reviewing your invoices, then you need to report use tax.
Was the invoice for purchase, rental, lease of tangible personal property or for a warranty or maintenance agreement of tangible property?
Did you pay sales tax of 7.0% or less?
Was the item used, stored, or consumed in the City of Lakewood?
Do I have any tax liability when I take over a business?
Yes, use tax is due on the fair market value of furniture, fixtures, supplies, and equipment, associated with the purchase of a business.
Are nutrition bars, diet bars, and meal replacement bars taxable?
Nutrition bars, diet bars, and meal replacement bars are taxable if they meet the definition of “candy” and do not have flour listed as an ingredient and do not require refrigeration.
Are powdered drink mixes, frozen drink concentrate, and concentrated soft drink syrup considered soft drinks?
Powdered drink mixes and frozen drink concentrate are not considered soft drinks because they are not liquid. Sweetened soft drink syrup is considered a soft drink because it is a liquid.
Is food purchased at a convenience store subject to Lakewood sales tax?
Food, as defined, is exempt from Lakewood sales tax when purchased at a convenience store. This exemption is not based on convenience or grocery type retailers.
Is food and drink for business use subject to Lakewood sales or use tax?
Food and drink for business use is subject to Lakewood tax. For example, bottled water, snacks, coffee, and donuts purchased for a business meeting or break room are subject to Lakewood tax. In most cases, if the items were purchased at a grocery retailer, the sufficient sales tax was not charged at the time of the sale. The business is required to remit 3% Lakewood use tax on those food and drink items that were not subject to city sales tax at the time of purchase.
How is "candy" defined?
“Candy” means a preparation of sugar, honey, or other natural or artificial sweeteners in combinations with chocolate, fruits, nuts, or other ingredients or flavorings in the forms of bars, drops, or pieces. “Candy” shall not include any preparation containing flour and shall require no refrigeration.
By definition, assorted bags of candy contain both taxable and non-taxable items, how are these purchases taxed?
Lakewood sales tax should be calculated on the entire purchase price of the assorted bag, when the bag contains both taxable and non-taxable items. The non-taxable items may only be exempted if the taxable and non-taxable items can be separately stated on the invoice.
How are "soft drinks" defined?
“Soft drink” means a nonalcoholic beverage that contains natural or artificial sweeteners. “Soft drink” does not include beverages that contain milk or milk products, soy, rice, or similar milk substitutes, or greater than fifty percent of vegetable or fruit juice by volume.