Tennessee law has issued a permanent sales tax exemption for firearm safes and firearm safety devices that will take effect on November 1, 2023.
The exemption was initially introduced from July 1, 2021 until June 30, 2022 to reduce the cost barriers to firearm safes and devices that would help buyers securely store their firearms and prevent unauthorized access. Now the sales tax exemption is back in place — and this time for good.
Read on for more details and requirements for reporting exempt sales.
What does Tennessee’s Firearm Safes and Safety Devices exemption include?
Firearm safes, firearm safety devices, locking devices for firearms, and firearm trigger locks will once again be exempted from state and local sales taxes. The exemption will apply to both the sales and installation of these items.
The new Tennesse law defines a “firearm safe” as a locking container or other enclosure designed for the secure storage of one or more firearms. The container must be equipped with a padlock, key lock, or combination lock, and cannot be made of glass.
The term “firearm safety devices” includes devices that prevent firearms from being operated without first deactivating the device, as well as devices designed to prevent unauthorized access to firearms.
What doesn’t the sales tax exemption include?
It’s important to note that this exemption doesn’t apply to all firearms or firearm accessories and only applies to items that are solely designed for firearm safety and security purposes. For example, firearm safes that double as general-purpose safes won’t be exempted from sales tax. Furthermore, the exemption won’t apply to firearms themselves, nor will it apply to ammunition storage or reloading equipment.
How to report exempt sales
All dealers must properly report exempt sales of firearm safes and safety devices. To do so, all taxable and exempt sales should be reported on Page 1, Line 1 (Gross Sales) of the Tennessee sales tax return. Additionally, exempt sales of firearm safes and safety devices should be reported on Schedule A, Line 9 (Other Deductions).
This permanent exemption is a positive step towards ensuring the safe and responsible storage of firearms in Tennessee. Businesses that sell these items might also see an increase in sales as a result of the exemption.
Check out our state-by-state Sales Tax Guides for more info on exemptions and sales tax.