Jun 30, 2010 5:18 PM by Greg Boyce

Salons chapped by tanning tax

A tax on tanning goes into effect Thursday, July 1.

Indoor tanners, who spend from $5 to $30 per session to get that bronze look, will now have to chip in another 10 percent to pay for health care.

"These are not people who can afford an extra tax," said Dan Humiston, President of the Indoor Tanning Association. "The economy is already taking a beating on everybody as it is."

Skin experts say, like a tax on cigarettes, this tax may help reduce the use of tanning booths, which are not healthy.  Seven out of ten indoor tanners are young women, the same group that has the highest incidence of melanoma.  And melanoma is the deadliest form of skin cancer. 

The Internal Revenue Service has issued a fact sheet for those in the tanning business:

1. Businesses providing ultraviolet tanning services must collect the 10 percent excise tax at the time the customer pays for the tanning services.
2. If the customer fails to pay the excise tax, the tanning service provider is liable for the tax.
3. The tax does not apply to phototherapy services performed by a licensed medical professional on his or her premises.
4. The tax does not apply to spray-on tanning services.
5. If a payment covers charges for tanning services along with other goods and services, the other goods and services may be excluded from the tax if they are separately stated and the charges do not exceed the fair market value for those other goods and services.
6. If the customer purchases bundled services and the charges are not separately stated, the tax applies to the portion of the payment that can be reasonably attributed to the indoor tanning services.
7. The tax does not have to be paid on membership fees for certain qualified physical fitness facilities that offer indoor tanning services as an incidental service to members without a separately identifiable fee.
8. Tanning service providers must report and pay the excise tax on a quarterly basis.
9. To pay the tax, businesses must file IRS Form 720, Quarterly Federal Excise Tax Return using an Employer Identification Number assigned by the IRS. Businesses that don't already have one can apply for an EIN online.

Find more information about the excise tax on tanning services, IRS Form 720 and other tax provisions of the Affordable Care Act go to the Internal Revenue Service website.



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