Code Section Group

Revenue and Taxation Code - RTC

DIVISION 2. OTHER TAXES [6001 - 61045]

  ( Heading of Division 2 amended by Stats. 1968, Ch. 279. )

PART 1. SALES AND USE TAXES [6001 - 7176]

  ( Part 1 added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 36. )

CHAPTER 5. Determinations [6451 - 6597]

  ( Chapter 5 added by Stats. 1941, Ch. 36. )

ARTICLE 1.5. Prepayment of Sales Tax on Motor Vehicle Fuel Distributions [6480 - 6480.9]
  ( Article 1.5 added by Stats. 1986, Ch. 214, Sec. 2. )

6480.
  

(a) For purposes of the imposition of the prepayment of sales tax on motor vehicle fuel or aircraft jet fuel pursuant to this article, the terms “aircraft jet fuel,” “aircraft jet fuel dealer,” “aviation gasoline,” “entry,” “in this state,” “motor vehicle fuel,” “person,” “removal,” “sale,” and “supplier” are defined pursuant to Part 2 (commencing with Section 7301), except as provided in subdivision (b).

(b) For purposes of this article, “motor vehicle fuel” does not include aviation gasoline for use in propelling aircraft.

(c) For purposes of the imposition of the prepayment of sales tax on diesel fuel pursuant to this article, the terms “diesel fuel,” “entry,” “in this state,” “removal,” “person,” and “supplier,” are defined pursuant to Part 31 (commencing with Section 60001).

(d) “Wholesaler” includes every person other than a supplier, dealing in motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel. “Wholesaler” does not include anyone dealing in motor vehicle fuel or diesel fuel in the capacity of an operator of a service station. “Wholesaler” does not include anyone dealing in aircraft jet fuel in the capacity of an aircraft jet fuel dealer.

(e) With respect to diesel fuel and aircraft jet fuel, “sale” means:

(1) The transfer of title or possession, exchange, or barter, conditional or otherwise, in any manner or by any means whatsoever, of aircraft jet fuel or diesel fuel (other than aircraft jet fuel or diesel fuel in a terminal) to a purchaser for a consideration.

(2) The transfer of the inventory position in the aircraft jet fuel or diesel fuel in a terminal if the purchaser becomes the positionholder with respect to the taxable fuel.

(f) For purposes of this article, aircraft jet fuel will be subject to the prepayment of sales tax at such time and in such manner as if it were subject to diesel fuel tax under the Diesel Fuel Tax Law in Part 31 (commencing with Section 60001), except that in the case of bulk transfers, aircraft jet fuel is not subject to the prepayment of sales tax as to the removal of diesel fuel in this state from any refinery as described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 60052, the entry of diesel fuel into this state as described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (b) of Section 60052, or the removal of diesel fuel in this state as described in subdivision (c) of Section 60052.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 2. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.1.
  

(a) At any time that motor vehicle fuel tax or diesel fuel tax is imposed or would be imposed, but for the dyed diesel fuel exemption in paragraph (1) of subdivision (a) of Section 60100, or the train operator exemption in paragraph (7) of subdivision (a) of Section 60100 or paragraph (11) of subdivision (a) of Section 7401, or, pursuant to subdivision (f) of Section 6480, would be deemed to be imposed, on any removal, entry, or sale in this state of motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel, the supplier shall collect prepayment of retail sales tax from the person to whom the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel is sold. However, if no sale occurs at the time of imposition of motor vehicle fuel tax or diesel fuel tax, the supplier shall prepay the retail sales tax on that motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel. The prepayment required to be collected by the supplier constitutes a debt owed by the supplier to this state until paid to the board, until satisfactory proof has been submitted to prove that the retailer of the fuel has paid the retail sales tax to the board, or until a supplier or wholesaler who has consumed the fuel has paid the use tax to the board. Each supplier shall report and pay the prepayment amounts to the board, in a form as prescribed by the board, in the period in which the fuel is sold. On each subsequent sale of that fuel, each seller, other than the retailer, shall collect from his or her purchaser a prepayment computed using the rate applicable at the time of sale. Each supplier shall provide his or her purchaser with an invoice for, or other evidence of, the collection of the prepayment amounts which shall be separately stated thereon.

(b) (1) A wholesaler shall collect prepayment of the retail sales tax from the person to whom the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel is sold. Each wholesaler shall provide his or her purchaser with an invoice for or other evidence of the collection of the prepayment amounts, which shall be separately stated thereon.

(2) Each wholesaler shall report to the board, in a form as prescribed by the board and for the period in which the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel was sold, all of the following:

(A) The number of gallons of fuel sold and the amount of sales tax prepayments collected by the wholesaler.

(B) The number of tax-paid gallons purchased and the amount of sales tax prepayments made by the wholesaler.

(C) In the event that the amount of sales tax prepayments collected by the wholesaler is greater than the amount of sales tax prepayments made by the wholesaler, then the excess constitutes a debt owed by the wholesaler to the state until paid to the board, or until satisfactory proof has been submitted that the retailer of the fuel has paid the tax to the board.

(c) A supplier or wholesaler who pays the prepayment and issues a resale certificate to the seller, but subsequently consumes the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel, shall be entitled to a credit against his or her sales and use taxes due and payable for the period in which the prepayment was made, provided that he or she reports and pays the use tax to the board on the consumption of that fuel.

(d) The amount of a prepayment paid by the retailer or a supplier or wholesaler who has consumed the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel to the seller from whom he or she acquired the fuel shall constitute a credit against his or her sales and use taxes due and payable for the period in which the sale was made. Failure of the supplier or wholesaler to report prepayments or the supplier’s or wholesaler’s failure to comply with any other duty under this article shall not constitute grounds for denial of the credit to the retailer, supplier, or wholesaler, either on a temporary or permanent basis or otherwise. To be entitled to the credit, the retailer, supplier, or wholesaler shall retain for inspection by the board any receipts, invoices, or other documents showing the amount of sales tax prepaid to his or her supplier, together with the evidence of payment.

(e) The rate of the prepayment required to be collected during the period from July 1, 1986, through March 31, 1987, shall be four cents ($0.04) per gallon of motor vehicle fuel distributed or transferred.

(f) The rate of prepayment required to be collected for motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, and diesel fuel as established by the board in effect on January 1, 2013, shall remain in effect through June 30, 2013.

(g) On July 1 of each succeeding year, the prepayment rate per gallon for motor vehicle fuel, rounded to the nearest one-half of one cent ($0.005), of the required prepayment shall be established by the board based upon 80 percent of the combined state and local sales tax rate established by Sections 6051, 6051.2, 6051.3, 6051.5, 7202, and 7203.1, and Section 35 of Article XIII of the California Constitution on the arithmetic average selling price (excluding sales tax) as reported by an industry publication of all grades of gasoline sold through a self-service gasoline station. The board shall make its determination of the rate no later than March 1 of the same year as the effective date of the new rate. Immediately upon making its determination and setting of the rate, the board shall each year, no later than May 1, notify every supplier, wholesaler, and retailer of motor vehicle fuel. In the event the price of fuel decreases or increases or an exemption from sales tax for sales of fuel is enacted, and the established rate results in or could result in prepayments which consistently exceed or are significantly lower than the retailers’ sales tax liability, the board may readjust the rate.

(h) On July 1 of each succeeding year, the prepayment rate per gallon for aircraft jet fuel, rounded to the nearest one-half of one cent ($0.005), shall be established by the board based upon 80 percent of the combined state and local sales tax rate established by Sections 6051, 6051.2, 6051.3, 6051.5, 7202, and 7203.1, and Section 35 of Article XIII of the California Constitution on the arithmetic average selling price (excluding sales and state excise taxes) as determined by the board based on published industry reports. The board shall make its determination of the rate no later than March 1 of the same year as the effective date of the new rate. Immediately upon making its determination and setting of the rate, the board shall each year, no later than May 1, notify every supplier, wholesaler, and retailer of aircraft jet fuel. In the event the price of aircraft jet fuel decreases or increases, and the established rate results in prepayments that consistently exceed or are significantly lower than the retailers’ sales tax liability, the board may readjust the rate.

(i) On July 1 of each succeeding year, the prepayment rate per gallon for diesel fuel, rounded to the nearest one-half of one cent ($0.005), shall be established by the board based upon 80 percent of the combined state and local sales tax rate established by Sections 6051, 6051.2, 6051.3, 6051.5, 6051.8, 7202, and 7203.1, and Section 35 of Article XIII of the California Constitution on the arithmetic average selling price (excluding sales and state excise taxes) as determined by the board based on published industry reports. The board shall make its determination of the rate no later than March 1 of the same year as the effective date of the new rate. Immediately upon making its determination and setting of the rate, the board shall each year, no later than May 1, notify every supplier, wholesaler, and retailer of diesel fuel. In the event the rate of sales tax imposed on sales of diesel fuel increases or decreases or the price of diesel fuel decreases or increases, and the established rate results in or could result in prepayments that consistently exceed or are significantly lower than the retailers’ sales tax liability, the board may readjust the rate.

(j) (1) Notwithstanding any other provision of this section, motor vehicle fuel sold by a supplier or wholesaler to a qualified purchaser who, pursuant to a contract with the State of California or its instrumentalities, resells that fuel to the State of California or its instrumentalities shall be exempt from the prepayment requirements.

(2) A qualified purchaser who acquires motor vehicle fuel for subsequent resale to the State of California or its instrumentalities pursuant to this subdivision shall furnish to the supplier or wholesaler from whom the fuel is acquired an exemption certificate, completed in accordance with any instructions or regulations as the board may prescribe. The supplier or wholesaler shall retain the certificate in his or her records in support of the exemption. To qualify for the prepayment exemption, both of the following conditions shall apply:

(A) The qualified purchaser does not take possession of the fuel at any time.

(B) The fuel is delivered into storage tanks owned or leased by the State of California or its instrumentalities via facilities of the supplier or wholesaler, or by common or contract carriers under contract with the supplier or wholesaler.

(3) For purposes of this subdivision, “qualified purchaser” means a wholesaler who does not have or maintain a storage facility or facilities for the purpose of selling motor vehicle fuel.

(Amended by Stats. 2013, Ch. 523, Sec. 2. (SB 788) Effective January 1, 2014.)

6480.2.
  

(a) If the board determines that it is necessary for the efficient administration of this part, the board may require a supplier or wholesaler to provide the board with a list of purchasers to whom the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel was sold.

(b) In addition to any other reports required under this article, the board may, by rule and otherwise, require additional, other, or supplemental reports, in any form which the board may require, from suppliers or wholesalers with respect to their sales of motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel.

(c) Any supplier or wholesaler who fails to comply with this section is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable as provided in Section 7153.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 4. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.3.
  

The supplier or wholesaler shall file his or her prepayment form together with a remittance of the prepayment amounts, if any, required to be collected pursuant to Section 6480.1 payable to the State Board of Equalization, on or before the last day of the month following the monthly period to which the prepayment form or each prepayment relates.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 5. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.4.
  

(a) Any supplier or wholesaler who fails to make a timely remittance to the board of the prepayment amounts, if any, required pursuant to Sections 6480.1 and 6480.3 shall also pay a penalty of 10 percent of the amount of the prepayment due but not paid, plus interest at the modified adjusted rate per month, or fraction thereof, established pursuant to Section 6591.5, from the date the prepayment became due and payable to the state until the date of payment.

(b) The penalty amount specified in subdivision (a) shall be 25 percent if the supplier or wholesaler knowingly or intentionally fails to make a timely remittance.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 6. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.6.
  

(a) The following persons who have paid prepayment amounts either directly to the board or to the person from whom the motor vehicle fuel, aircraft jet fuel, or diesel fuel was purchased shall be refunded those amounts:

(1) Any person who exports the fuel for subsequent sale outside this state.

(2) Any person who sells the fuel which is exempt from the sales or use tax pursuant to Sections 6352, 6357, 6381, and 6396.

(3) Any person who has lost the fuel through fire, flood, theft, leakage, evaporation, shrinkage, spillage, or accident, prior to any retail sale.

(4) Any supplier who has removed fuel from an approved terminal at the terminal rack, but only to the extent that the supplier can show that tax on the same amount of fuel has been paid more than one time by the same supplier.

(5) Any person who is unable to collect the prepayment from the purchaser insofar as the sales of the fuel are represented by accounts which have been found to be worthless and charged off for income tax purposes, or, if the person is not required to file income tax returns, accounts which have been charged off in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. If partial payments have been made, the payments shall be prorated between amounts due for fuel and amounts due for the related prepayment. If any of those accounts are thereafter in whole or in part collected by the seller, the gallons of fuel represented by the amounts collected shall be included in the first return filed after that collection and the amount of the prepayment thereon paid with the return.

(b) In lieu of a refund, the board may authorize a credit to be taken by the person to whom the refund is due upon his or her prepayment form or sales and use tax return.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 8. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.7.
  

(a) The board may require any supplier or wholesaler subject to this article to place with the board any security that the board determines is necessary to ensure compliance with this article. The amount of the security shall be fixed by the board but shall not be greater than three times the estimated average liability of suppliers or wholesalers required to file returns for monthly periods, determined in any manner that the board deems proper, or five hundred thousand dollars ($500,000), whichever amount is less. These amounts apply regardless of the type of security placed with the board. The amount of the security may be increased or decreased by the board subject to the maximum amounts. The security required pursuant to this section is in addition to the bond or bonds required pursuant to Section 7486.

(b) The board may sell the security at public auction if it becomes necessary to so do in order to recover any tax or any amount required to be collected or penalty due. Notice of the sale may be served upon the person who placed the security personally or by mail. If service is by mail, service shall be made in the manner prescribed for service of a notice of a deficiency determination and shall be addressed to the person at his or her address as it appears in the records of the board. However, security in the form of a bearer bond issued by the United States or the State of California which has a prevailing market price may be sold by the board at a private sale at a price not lower than the prevailing market price thereof. Upon any sale, any surplus above the amounts due shall be returned to the supplier or wholesaler who placed the security.

(Amended by Stats. 2001, Ch. 429, Sec. 9. Effective October 2, 2001. Operative January 1, 2002, by Sec. 78 of Ch. 429.)

6480.9.
  

(a) A person qualified under subdivision (b) may issue a certificate to a seller with respect to the amount of sales tax required to be prepaid pursuant to Section 6480.1 when purchasing diesel fuel from the seller. The certificate shall be completed in accordance with any instructions or regulations as the board may prescribe, and shall clearly specify that the person will purchase the volume of diesel fuel that the person reasonably expects he or she will sell that qualifies for the exemption under Section 6357.1. A seller that receives a properly completed certificate from a person qualified under subdivision (b) shall not be required to collect the prepayment of the retail sales tax otherwise required in Section 6480.1 on that volume of the diesel fuel sold pursuant to the certificate.

(b) A person is qualified for purposes of this section if both of the following conditions are met:

(1) The person sold diesel fuel that was used by the consumer in a manner that qualified, or would have qualified for an exemption under Section 6357.1, and in the prior year, those sales totaled more than 25 percent of the person’s total taxable sales.

(2) The person’s sales consist primarily of either bulk deliveries of fuel or of fuel sales through a cardlock, keylock, or other unattended mechanism, or both. For purposes of the preceding sentence, “bulk deliveries” means transfers of fuel into storage tanks of 500 gallons or more.

(c) A person issuing a certificate pursuant to this section is liable for sales tax that is imposed under the Bradley-Burns Uniform Local Sales and Use Tax Law (Part 1.5 (commencing with Section 7200)) or in accordance with the Transactions and Use Tax Law (Part 1.6 (commencing with Section 7251)) and sales tax that is imposed under Section 6051.2 or 6201.2, or under Section 35 of Article XIII of the California Constitution.

(d) A person issuing a certificate pursuant to this section shall be liable for sales tax on any portion of the gross receipts derived from the sale of fuel that is not sold in a manner that qualifies for an exemption under Section 6357.1.

(e) A person liable for the sales tax under subdivision (c) or (d) of this section shall report and pay that sales tax with the return for the reporting period in which the person sells the fuel.

(f) Any person who gives a certificate pursuant to this section for purchases of diesel fuel that he or she knows at the time of purchase do not qualify for the exemption from the prepayment pursuant to this section for the purpose of evading payment of the prepayment of the retail sales tax is guilty of a misdemeanor punishable as provided in Section 7153. In addition, the person shall be liable to the state for a penalty of one thousand dollars ($1,000) for each certificate issued for personal gain or to evade the payment of taxes.

(Added by renumbering Section 6480.3 (as added by Stats. 2002, Ch. 446) by Stats. 2004, Ch. 527, Sec. 4. Effective January 1, 2005.)

RTCRevenue and Taxation Code - RTC1.5