Shopify's tax breakdowns different than others? Why? (another California question)
I am really having trouble understanding the way Shopify breaks down taxes and how I'm supposed to report tax for different districts. We are a mail-order only company based in San Diego with a physical office/warehouse from where we ship our product. Here is Shopify's tax breakdown for an order shipped to San Jose, CA 95136 (I have Shopify Tax if it matters):
Here is how TaxJar breaks it down:
Here is how Avalara breaks it down
And here is what CDTFA shows:
⁉️What's going on here? These are all different!? It may not really matter because I can attribute this sale to Santa Clara County--but shopify's finance reports don't really make this easy.
Now here is an example of a more confusing order shipped to Oak Park, CA 91377:
Here is what TaxJar shows:
and finally CDTFA:
⁉️ Here, everything other than Shopify points to this sale being attributed to Ventura county - However Shopify has zero mention of Ventura. If I just go by Shopify numbers, it looks like I would attribute this to San Diego??
I have many orders that show a cryptic "San Diego Co Local Tax Sl" breakdown that seems like it should actually be the ship-to address' country.
How am I supposed to report these?
Thanks for anyone that made it this far.
What's happening for you is that your tax engine (probably Shopify Tax?) has a different mapping from address to county than the ones used by Taxjar and Avalara. This happens some times because even the same zipcode can map to different counties. So it really matters what tax engine you are using, and the logic behind it.
Thanks @tongbo, that technically makes sense, but I would have assumed something like government mandated financials would (should?) leave little to interpretation/ambiguity.
so, that still leaves me in the dark with the Shopify tax reports not attributing to some regions (the Ventura example above).
Hi @_leo, I fully understand where you are coming from. However, given that the tax jurisdiction changes all the time (thousands of changes each year?), and the fact that it's extremely difficult to be 100% accurate on the address to tax jurisdiction mapping, some level of error is expected. The state governments are also well aware of that, so they won't be mad about some small degree of errors.
haha, @tongbo , but isn't this what computers are for?
A lookup table is not hard, it's just tedious work and should be automated. The tables should be readily available (CA for example: cdtfa.ca.gov), the ship-to city is on the order, they just need to be cross referenced. I understand if amounts are off 0.25% here and there... but entire jurisdictions just not accounted for? I don't buy it.
Shopify can do better, especially if we are paying for it (Shopify Tax).
On our Shopify Expert Marketplace, you can find many trusted third party developers and fr...By Arno Nov 27, 2023
You've downloaded the Search & Discovery app from the Shopify App store, and as you're ...By Skye Nov 8, 2023