Sacramento – Proposed legislation would make pet medicines purchased from a California veterinarian tax free.
The new measure is sponsored by the California State Board of Equalization. Board of Equalization Member, George Runner, says; “Making pet medicine tax-free will benefit California pet owners and veterinarians. It also benefits Californians by keeping more dollars in our state and promoting animal health.”
According to the Californian Veterinary Medical Association, there are 19 million companion animal pets in California. Approximately 33% of households own at least one dog and approximately 28% own at least one cat. They also note that about half of all states currently exempt animal prescription drugs and medications from taxation.
Many Californians currently buy medicine for their pets online under the assumption that such purchases are tax free-not knowing they owe “use tax,” the equivalent of sales tax.
The proposed legislation would eliminate sales tax on drugs and medicines sold or used for the treatment of animals by veterinarians, animal shelters and certain nonprofits. Licensed veterinarians are currently considered consumers and must pay tax on any drugs or medicines they purchase for use or resale.
The proposal, which will be amended into Senate Bill 688, must be approved by the Legislature and signed by the Governor before becoming law.