Litter Tax

Who is Subject to the Tax

Every manufacturer, wholesaler, distributor or retailer of the following products is subject to the tax. Businesses become subject to the tax on the first January 1 they are in business. For example, if you begin business on February 15, 2012, you become liable for the tax on January 1, 2013, and your first return will be due on May 1, 2014. If you begin business on January 1, 2013, you are liable on January 1, 2013, and your first return is due May 1, 2014.

  1. Food for human or pet consumption
  2. Groceries
  3. Cigarettes and Tobacco
  4. Soft Drinks and Carbonated waters
  5. Beer and Other Malt Beverages
  6. Wine
  7. Newspaper or Magazines
  8. Paper Products and Household Paper
  9. Glass Containers
  10. Metal Containers
  11. Plastic or Fiber Containers made of Synthetic Material
  12. Cleaning Agents and Toiletries
  13. Nondrug Drugstore Sundries
  14. Distilled Spirits
  15. Motor Vehicle Parts


Return and Due Date for Filing

Litter tax returns are filed on Form 200. Beginning with the 2015 return, Form 200 may be filed electronically, using eForms.

Form 200 must be filed by May 1 of each year. There is no provision for extension. If filing a paper return, the filing address is:

Department of Taxation
Post Office Box 2185
Richmond, Virginia 23218-2185

Make checks payable to "Virginia Department of Taxation."


Tax Rates

The tax is imposed at a rate of $10.00 per business establishment. In addition, businesses that manufacture, sell or distribute groceries, soft drinks, carbonated waters, beer and other malt beverages must pay an additional $15 per business establishment.



If a litter tax return is filed late, or if the tax is paid late, a penalty equal to 100% of the tax will be assessed.

EXAMPLE: The litter tax return for Ronnie's Restaurant was due on May 1, but was not filed until June 3. The return shows a total tax due of $25. The department will assess a penalty of $25 for late filing.



The Code of Virginia requires the accrual of interest on any balance of unpaid tax from the due date for payment through the date the tax is paid. Interest charges apply to late payments, as well as additional balances assessed from amended returns or audit adjustments.

Interest is accrued at the federal underpayment rate established under Internal Revenue Code Section 6621, plus 2%. The rate is subject to change at the beginning of each calendar quarter.

Interest is not accrued on late filing or penalties at the initial point of assessment. If an assessment remains unpaid for longer than thirty days, interest will be accrued on the entire balance due, including penalty and interest, from the date of assessment through the date of payment or the date of the second notice. Interest is accrued on late payment penalties at the initial point of assessment from the due date for payment through the date of assessment.


Application of the Tax

The litter tax does not apply to businesses where the sale or distribution of taxable products is incidental to normal business operations, such as establishments that sell snack items and soft drinks as a convenience to customers. Other examples include nursing homes, hospitals (excluding gift shops and cafeterias), dry cleaners, laundromats, antiques shops, repair garages, and companies that maintain "honor system" boxes.

To register your business for litter tax, click Registering Your Business.

Last Updated 10/17/2016 06:52