Reminder: It’s Sales Tax-Free Week Aug. 18-24

Just in time for back-to-school clothes shopping, Connecticut’s 19th Annual Sales Tax Free Week, during which retail purchases of most clothing and footwear items priced under $100 are exempt from the 6.35% sales and use tax, is going on right now, through Saturday, Aug. 24, 2019.

The one-week sales and use tax holiday applies to individual items, regardless of how many items are sold to a customer on the same invoice. That means even if a total bill is above $100, the exemption applies to each item that qualifies.

Connecticut shoppers almost didn’t get to benefit from the sales tax exemption this year–Gov. Ned Lamont had proposed an initial budget eliminating the sales tax holiday, but the final budget eventually passed by lawmakers still kept the exemption, and even added some new items to the list of goods that qualify.

The CT Department of Revenue Services has published an online list of examples of clothing and footwear that are exempt when sold for less than $100–as well as some interesting ones that are not exempt.

Golf shirts, aprons, sneakers, socks and undergarments are exempt; lobster bibs, riding pants, handbags and jewelry are not tax-free this week.

Even with items that aren’t exempt, Connecticut shoppers are still expected to benefit from approximately $4.9 million in sales and use tax savings during the state’s annual sales tax holiday–and it couldn’t come at a better time.

“Having this tax-free holiday helps working families stretch their dollar a little bit more during the busy back-to-school season while giving businesses an extra boost to their bottom line,” Lamont said in a press release. “I also encourage residents during this busy shopping week to consider locally-owned retailers and supporting Connecticut’s small business community.”

Connecticut retailers traditionally offer additional clothing and footwear discounts during Sales Tax Free Week, resulting in even more savings. Tax is calculated on the final sales price of an item, after all reductions and coupons are applied. Items that cost $100 or more are subject to sales and use tax for the entire price of that item.