Washington Tax Regulations for Precious Metals
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Washington Sales Tax for Precious Metals

Published April 23, 2020

As defined in WAC 458-20-248, the following bullion and numismatic items are EXEMPT from sales tax when shipped by Gainesville Coins to a state of Washington address:

EXEMPT

  1. Gold, silver, platinum, rhodium, palladium or other precious metals refined into bullion bars, sticks, refined nuggets, or refined dust, sold according to its precious metal content and not form;

  2. Coins and other forms of money made from gold, silver, or other metal; that has been or is used as a medium of exchange by the state of Washington, the U.S. or a foreign nation.

All other bullion or numismatic items and accessories sold by Gainesville Coins are subject to Washington state sales tax.

Our Unified Business Identifier is 604-430-795. Excise Tax effective 04/22/2019.

Washington Tax Code - Sales Tax Exemptions For Precious Metals

WAC 458-20-248 Sales of precious metal bullion and monetized bullion.
Effective July 1, 1985, amounts derived from sales of precious metal bullion and monetized bullion as defined herein, are not subject to business and occupation tax under either the wholesaling or retailing classification or to retail sales tax. Statutory law expressly excludes such sales from the definitions of the terms, "wholesale sale," "sale at wholesale," "retail sale," and "sale at retail."

The term, "precious metal bullion" is statutorily defined to mean any precious metal which has been put through a process of smelting or refining, including, but not limited to, gold, silver, platinum, rhodium, and palladium, and which is in such state or condition that its value depends upon its contents and not upon its form.

The term, "monetized bullion" means coin or other forms of money manufactured from gold, silver, or other metals and heretofore, now, or hereafter used as a medium of exchange under the laws of this state, the United States, or any foreign nation, but does not include coins or money sold to be manufactured into jewelry or works of art.

Thus, sales of processed or refined precious metal valued solely upon the content thereof, whatever its form, are not subject to tax in this state. This includes processed nuggets, bars, sticks, dust, and other processed forms of precious metal. For example, sales of gold or silver in raw, refined forms to dentists, laboratories, jewelers, and other persons, for their own consumption or for resale are not taxable. However, sales of precious metal which has been manufactured or further processed into any form which determines or adds to the value thereof are fully taxable. For example, sales of jewelry items, medallions, artworks, and other items, the value of which is dependent upon more than the mere content of precious metal therein, are subject to wholesaling or retailing business and occupation tax, whichever is applicable, and retail sales tax as appropriate.

Sales of metal money, in coined or other form, which is recognized as a medium of exchange in the financial marketplace, are not taxable. However, sales of coin or money, whether or not recognized as a medium of exchange, to jewelers or other persons for the purpose of manufacturing jewelry or artworks therefrom are fully taxable. For example, sales of coins for necklaces or to be used as buttons or in paintings or painting frames, etc., are taxable.

It is presumed that all sales of coin and metal money are entitled to tax exemption: Provided, That in order to be exempt of tax persons who knowingly sell such things to buyers who are regularly engaged in the business of manufacturing jewelry or works of art must take a written, signed, and dated statement from such buyers that the coins or metal money are not being purchased for use in manufacturing jewelry or works of art. Artistic or cultural organizations which purchase such things are exempt of retail sales tax as provided in WAC 458-20-249.

The tax exclusions explained herein apply equally to sales of precious metal bullion or monetized bullion transferred through documents of ownership, certificates, confirmation slips, or other indicia of ownership.

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