When is labor taxable as part of a sale in California?

Answer

Generally speaking, it’s going to be subject to tax when it’s fabrication labor, that is it’s labor that’s part incurred in fabricating the item of tangible personal property. The other would be a subset of fabrication labor. I call it first assembly labor. So if you buy something and it comes disassembled and you bring it to somebody and have them assemble a brand new item, that would be considered fabrication labor but often times it’s referred to as first assembly labor. It would also be subject to tax. The other thing is, with respect to the non-taxable labor, you want to make sure that it’s separately stated – it’s not built into the price of whatever you’re selling. That would just confuse the matter and that could subject it to sales tax.

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