What You Need to Know about Virginia’s PPE Sales Tax Exemption for Businesses 

Governor Northam declared a state of emergency due to the COVID-19 pandemic on March 12, 2020 and has issued several related executive orders. Businesses across Virginia are purchasing personal protective equipment (PPE) to prevent the spread of COVID-19. In response, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation in 2021 that exempts qualifying business-related PPE purchases from sales tax. The temporary exemption is available for purchases made beginning March 11, 2021. The exemption will end the day after the last of the Governor’s COVID-19 executive orders expire. The legislation does not allow for refunds of tax paid on purchases of PPE made prior to March 11, 2021.

Examples of qualifying products include, but are not limited to:

  • Face coverings and masks;
  • Disinfecting products;
  • Gloves;
  • Hand sanitizer;
  • Temperature-checking devices, and more. 

For a full list of qualifying products, see the Guidelines for Retail Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Personal Protective Equipment

You must have a COVID-19 safety protocol in place to qualify for this exemption. See the Guidelines for Retail Sales and Use Tax Exemption for Personal Protective Equipment for more information on these protocols and additional guidance.   

For more information, including the Exemption Certificate, see the Sales Tax Exemptions page.

If you have any questions, please contact Customer Services at 804.367.8037.