Carrier Scammed on AT&T Sales Tax?

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Burrstone, Sep 17, 2015.

  1. Burrstone macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2014
    Location:
    Long Island, NY
    #1
    I pre ordered my 6s, my 4th iphone with them in 5 years, and this is the 3rd iphone on the Next plan. I go with the 20 month plan so I can upgrade it in 12 months so I can get the new phone when it comes out every year. Why does AT&T charge for "estimated" sales tax upfront? Shouldn't the tax be charged monthly with the installment plan? When I was checking out and the site said I was basically given credit for remaining installment payments I was thinking where's my refund for the sales tax I didn't use considering the estimated sales tax is calculated on the full price of the phone that I will not pay when I upgrade. Sure if I finished paying off the 20 payments I would have payed the full price of the phone but I paid 12 payments and am entering a new 20 month agreement that I must pay tax on the full retail price of the phone... Sure, it's under $30 but it's my $30! I'd love to know if AT&T is handing the full sales tax over or is saying "nope look he only made 3/5 of the installment payments before upgrading, so we don't owe tax on the full retail price and pocketing my $30?
     
  2. DoofenshmirtzEI macrumors 6502a

    DoofenshmirtzEI

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #2
    If you buy a car and trade it in before you finish paying it off, the state doesn't give you a refund on the sales tax. Sales tax goes to the state, AT&T doesn't keep it, and they pay it all at once, not in monthly installments.
     
  3. AppleFan91, Sep 17, 2015
    Last edited: Sep 18, 2015

    AppleFan91 macrumors 65816

    AppleFan91

    Joined:
    Sep 11, 2012
    Location:
    Indy, US
    #3
    As someone who works in the industry for one of the "Big 2" carriers in the US. You weren't scammed. Most states require taxes to be paid up front. They don't care if it's being financed over time interest-free, they see it as you bought a device at the full retail cost.
     
  4. capitanbuzo macrumors 65816

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2007
    #4
    That's the correct practice as someone who works at the big 4 accounting firms.
     
  5. Steve686 macrumors 68020

    Steve686

    Joined:
    Nov 13, 2007
    Location:
    US>FL>Miami/Dade>Sunny Isles Beach>Condo
    #5
    You actually bought the phone just as if you paid for it in full.

    ATT is just letting you pay them back one month at a time for it, interest free.
     
  6. Jtludwig macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 24, 2012
    #6
    Whine whine whine. You weren't scammed.
     
  7. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #7
    Simple, when you buy something you pay the sales tax on it. Whither you finance it, pay cash or even barter is unimportant to the state. Only that the sales tax is paid.
     
  8. deeddawg macrumors 604

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2010
    Location:
    US
    #8
    The only scam here is the OP's "education". How sales tax works is basic civics / home-economics. It's appalling that we let people get out of school and into the real world without understanding this stuff.
     
  9. Sketchr macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Jun 15, 2009
    #9
    You're being scammed by your local government for requiring sales taxes and how the funds are used, but not by at&t for collecting them. All merchants must collect them as per tax policy.
     
  10. maxsix Suspended

    maxsix

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2015
    Location:
    Western Hemisphere
    #10
    The fear and hate of AT&T is fostered primarily by iPhone users, it's a very unique phenomenon.

    Failing do take personal responsibility for reading the contract they agreed to, failing to read terms and conditions, they lazily post questions on the forum so other uninformed users can toss in more lies, guesses, false information all under the guise of being correct.

    All the FUD snowballs and those who thrive on bitching and complaining spew the hate.
     
  11. BL4zD macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2010
    #11
    You shouldn't pay sales tax on a lease. It *does* matter because leasing is not buying.

    If you lease a car you won't pay "sales" tax until/unless you choose to buy it out in the end. Reducing the purchase price is one of the main benefits of leasing.
     
  12. noobinator macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Jun 19, 2009
    Location:
    Los Angeles, CA
    #12
    This is how the world works in everything. Why should smart phones be different?
     
  13. crazyeyes macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Oct 5, 2005
    Location:
    Easton PA
    #13
    This is actually not true, if you buy a car and still owe say $20,000 on it and you get $20,000 for it on trade and your new car is $40,000 you get tax credit for the $20,000 trade value and only pay taxes on the difference of $20,000. So you do get a credit for whatever your trade is worth, now that might not be as much as you would have thought but at least you are getting a break on the taxes when trading in a car. I work at a car dealership.

    So I don't see why our phones can't work this way.
     
  14. chabig macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    #14
    I guess what you say is true for leases, but buying an iPhone in installments is not leasing.
     
  15. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    #15
    What I am slightly concerned about is they charged the tax for the device up front but I am wondering if they are also doing it on my monthly bill. How can I tell if any tax is being paid on my installment plan? That's what concerns me. I don't trust stuff like that.
     
  16. chabig macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2002
    #16
    You won't be charged sales tax on your monthly bill. Just check your statements.
     
  17. DeftwillP macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jan 28, 2011
    #17
    I wish I had more hands to give you more thumbs up....especially the first sentence.
     
  18. ricktat macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2013
    #18
    I can't wait until next Friday so threads like this will go awayo_O
     
  19. Julien macrumors G3

    Julien

    Joined:
    Jun 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta
    #19
    They are not but is this your first 'bill' in the real world? All you do is LOOK at your phone bill. Everything is all there in 'black and white'. Even if you still don't believe it simply add and divide to get the answer. It is all SO simple.
     
  20. DoofenshmirtzEI macrumors 6502a

    DoofenshmirtzEI

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #20
    It doesn't work that way in every state, and those are exceptions only for cars. Same reason why a car lease in some (but not all) states only charge sales tax on the monthly payments. Everything else, the state figures someone bought something (whether it is the consumer as the buyer or the lessor as the buyer) and they want their pound of flesh. In this circumstance, this is not a lease, it is a purchase with financing agreement. The fact that the agreement includes an allowed trade in clause doesn't change that. Every financing agreement I've ever engaged in, sales tax is paid up front, and while the sales tax may be financed too, it still gets paid to the state.
     
  21. AbSoluTc macrumors 68040

    AbSoluTc

    Joined:
    Sep 21, 2008
    #21
    Lol, no it's not. Been with AT&T for 6 years. I just have a funny feeling this might happen. Unlikely though. My brain just gets going. :)
     
  22. rockitdog macrumors 68020

    Joined:
    Mar 25, 2013
    #22
    Easy there, put the condescending words away. It was a honest question, most times that sales people are terrible at explaining to customers what is being purchased so I'm sure this is a common question for a lot of people.
     
  23. satchow macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2011
    #23
    Uhm. If you're being charged (price of phone + tax) / number of installments, then you're paying tax.
     
  24. Jessem1133 macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Sep 12, 2014
    #24
    Lol, scammed. People are so quick to jump to conclusions.
     
  25. DoofenshmirtzEI macrumors 6502a

    DoofenshmirtzEI

    Joined:
    Mar 1, 2011
    #25
    We have one line with a Next plan on it right now. It gets charged the same amount of sales tax as the lines that don't have a Next plan on them. Running the numbers, it's obvious the sales tax is being charged on the $15 line fee and not the Next financing payment.
     

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