I'm searching for specific terms to distinguish different kinds of taxes, one has to pay when providing a bill to a customer:

Lets say the base price for my services is 100$

  1. A (normal) tax which is included in the total and appears on the receipt like Sum: 120$ (20$ tax included) - The customer has to pay this tax to the provider and the provider forwards the 20$ to the tax authority (examples: German VAT, UK VAT)

  2. A tax which the customer has to pay himself to the tax authority. It only appears on the receipt with a notice for the customer: Sum: 100$ (please pay 20$ tax to your local tax authority) So the customer transfers 100$ to the provider and 20$ to the tax authority /examples: Belgium additional duties)

  3. A tax which the provider has to pay and cannot put on the bill to the customer. So the receipt will be Sum 100$ The customer transfers 100$ to the provider and and the provider has to pay 20$ to the tax authority himself. (examples: Hungary, Lithuania )

There are several countries where several of these 3 tax types exist for certain services/transactions and I have not found some official or even short descriptive terms to distinguish between them.

  • Examples of the jurisdictions you are referring to would help here, as it seems there is some confusion in your terminology choices. However, it seems this may be falling outside of 'personal finance' and into 'small business operations'. Jul 12, 2016 at 15:41
  • I added some example jurisdictions, I think you are right about the confusion of terminology choices, that is why I'm searching exact international English terms. And sorry if this is not the right community, I didn't know where to ask and there were a lot of tax related discussions on this page, so I thought there could be knowledgeable users here to answer.
    – Falco
    Jul 12, 2016 at 15:51
  • 2
    Also the US has no VAT, so, to the extent that matters to your question, your premise is wrong. Like @Grade'Eh'Bacon, I'm unclear on what you're asking (and how it relates to personal finance), so I'm not sure if this point about "VAT" matters.
    – user32479
    Jul 12, 2016 at 15:51
  • @Brick Is the community really only about personal finances? Quoting from the Help -> Tour page: Money Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for people who want to be financially literate...detailed answers to every question about money or personal finance. - so I thought general questions about money, tax or small-business-owner finances would be in scope of this page?
    – Falco
    Jul 12, 2016 at 15:54
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    It's not clear to me that the differences you describe are always differences in the tax itself. They may just be differences in merchant practices. For instance, in case 3, even though the merchant can't put $20 on the bill as a separate item, they can still just raise the price of the item by $20 (or whatever amount is needed so that they net $100 after tax).
    – BrenBarn
    Jul 13, 2016 at 7:11

2 Answers 2


Here is a summary of tax types for consumers and businesses:

  • Consumption
  • Value Added
  • Wages
  • Capital
  • Environmental
  • Goods and Sales
  • Sales and Use
  • Indirect

Consumption taxes play a crucial role in the Americas, regardless of whether those are assessed as Value Added Tax (VAT), Goods and Sales Tax (GST), Sales and Use Tax (SUT) a Customs duty or excise tax. For tax authorities, indirect taxes are an efficient and often a fair way of raising revenue and we see indirect tax revenues continue to increase as a proportion of tax take around the world. The rules, rates, interpretations and practices are also constantly changing.


  • Thank you for the lost with terms and the explaining links - this is exactly what I was looking for.
    – Falco
    Dec 13, 2018 at 22:42
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    @Falco You were not alone. This question is fundamental. I don't know why it was downvoted, but that's the internet... Dec 13, 2018 at 22:53

I think you're missing the fact that in a number of places there is legal onus on a vendor to collect tax from the customer for remittance to a government body.

It's not about a vendor's standard practice. A governing body says, in order to do business here you must collect this tax your customer owes us and remit it to us. In fact, even if the sales tax is not collected (in the US if an item is bought from a state without sales tax or online without sales tax collected but used in a state with a sales tax) your state may require you to report and pay a "use tax" which most people don't realize they owe and don't pay.

This was the argument against Amazon (and online retailers in general) in California and many other states. "I can avoid a X% sales tax by purchasing from Amazon." You didn't actually avoid anything, you illegally skirted a use tax. Effectively, Amazon was enabling a number of people to illegally evade state use taxes because there is no effective way for the state to audit.

Since we get a lot of these "teach me everything about [blanket thing that's really complex when you peel even one layer of the onion back] because I'm working on software that will simplify this thing that can't possibly be that complex" questions. I suggest you learn a lot more about taxes before trying to bring whatever it is you're working on to market. Right now there are three different sales tax amounts in Los Angeles county depending on what zip code you're in. Sales tax in California ranges from 6% to 10.25% depending on city and county. Different cities and states will have different methods of posting sales tax amounts.

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