Should fees on my cell phone bill be subject to tax?


Q. When I receive a bill for my cell phone, New Jersey sales tax is applied on both the monthly bill and the various federal and state fees that are added to the bill. Shouldn’t I only be charged sales tax on the actual wireless service and not on the various government fees?
— Consumer

A. All those fees can be frustrating to see.

But the taxability of telecommunications fees depends on the specific situation.

If the fees are imposed on the carrier, the fees are usually passed along to the customer, said Danielle Currie, a spokeswoman for the New Jersey Treasury Department.

“The fees then are taxable because they become part of the sales price of the service,” she said. “However, if the fees are imposed directly on the customer and are merely collected by the carrier, it is not subject to New Jersey sales tax.”

If you think you’ve been wrongly charged sales tax, you can contact the Division of Taxation at 609-322-6057.

You can even ask for a refund by filing Form A-3730 if you’ve been wrongly charged.

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This story was originally published on May 17, 2022. presents certain general financial planning principles and advice, but should never be viewed as a substitute for obtaining advice from a personal professional advisor who understands your unique individual circumstances.