BEFORE THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION
Petitioner, : FINDINGS OF FACT,
: CONCLUSIONS OF LAW,
v. : AND FINAL DECISION
AUDITING DIVISION OF THE : Appeal No. 91-1222
UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION :
: Account No. XXXXX
STATEMENT OF CASE
This matter came before the Utah State Tax Commission for a formal hearing on XXXXX. Paul F. Iwasaki, Presiding Officer, heard the matter for and in behalf of the Commission. Present and representing the Petitioner was XXXXX. Present and representing the Respondent was XXXXX, Assistant Utah Attorney General.
Based upon the evidence and testimony presented at the hearing, the Tax Commission hereby makes its:
FINDINGS OF FACT
1. The tax in question is sales tax.
2. The period in question is XXXXX.
3. The Petitioner is an individual who resides in XXXXX and has been a resident of XXXXX since approximately XXXXX.
4. Although a resident of XXXXX, the Petitioner owns a home in Utah and commutes to Utah for medical care.
5. The Petitioner's son, also named XXXXX, had been in the market for a XXXXX. The Petitioner was aware of this and, during one of his trips to Utah, found a suitable XXXXX at XXXXX, located in XXXXX.
6. The Petitioner notified his son who is a resident of XXXXX, who in turn asked his father to purchase the vehicle on his behalf.
7. The Petitioner purchased the motor vehicle for his son with funds provided by his son.
8. A non-resident affidavit was completed by the Petitioner, listing the address of his son.
9. The non-resident affidavit did not contain a statement of any of the provisions of the State Tax Commission Administrative Rule which pertains to the requirements for the nonresident exemption.
10. The Petitioner believed that the vehicle in question was legitimately exempt from sales tax.
11. The Auditing Division assessed a sales tax deficiency and imposes a 15% penalty alleging the Petitioner acted in intentional disregard of a law or rule.
12. The vehicle in question was registered and titled in XXXXX.
CONCLUSIONS OF LAW
Sales of vehicles of a type required to be registered under the motor vehicle laws of the state which are made of bona fide non-residents of the state and are not thereafter registered to use in this state except as necessary to transport them to the borders of the state are exempt from sales tax. (Utah Code Ann. §59-12-104(9).)
Any person qualifying as a resident who operates a vehicle, or allows the operation of a vehicle in this state must register it immediately. For the purposes of vehicle registration, the term "resident" means,
...any person, except: a tourist temporarily within the state, or student, covered under the rule R873-22-4.M who owns, leases, or rents a residence or place of business within the state, or occupies or permits to be occupied a Utah residence or place of business. (Utah State Tax Commission
Administrative Rule R873-22M-1(lB).)
DECISION AND ORDER
In the present case, the issue to be determined by the Commission in this case is who was the "purchaser" of the vehicle in question.
With respect to the issue in question, the Tax Commission finds that the Petitioner purchased the XXXXX in question on behalf of his son. Although the Commission does not condone or encourage third party purchases, absent a specific policy prohibiting such action and under the unique facts of this case, the Commission finds that the purchase of the vehicle was a tax exempt transaction.
Based upon the foregoing, the Tax Commission reverses the determination of the Auditing Division. It is so ordered.
DATED this 11th day of March, 1992.
BY ORDER OF THE UTAH STATE TAX COMMISSION.
R. H. Hansen Roger O. Tew
Joe B. Pacheco S. Blaine Willes