In a year of change, Laurie Hepp wanted a car she could count on and leased a 2014 Jeep Grand Cherokee while still living in Ohio. The deal included paying a sales tax of more than $1,000.
"We got all the paperwork," said Laurie, "Everything went through and had driven it for a few months until we relocated."
They relocated to South Carolina last August. Soon after, Laurie made the move official at the SC DMV.
"She issued our plates and we had no problem. She said we were good to go," said Laurie.
And she thought she was until she received a letter from U.S. Bank, the company financing her lease. The letter said she owed a South Carolina sales tax on the lease. So Laurie called the SC DMV.
"And she stated that there's no additional taxes, that we paid our property taxes," said Laurie. "And because we leased in another state previously and we paid taxes there, there should be no additional taxes for South Carolina."
Laurie says she relayed the message back to U.S. Bank several times by phone and fax, that she doesn't owe any more taxes. In the meantime, she was being charged a monthly fee for not paying the tax. After nearly five months of going back and forth, Laurie called 7 On Your Side.
For privacy reasons, U.S. Bank couldn't give us specifics but told us over the phone that Laurie's issue had been resolved.
Laurie also got a call back from U.S. Bank.
"Basically they stated that they were following up on it and that it was a miscommunication and that they would fix the error," said Laurie.
She received a letter Tuesday afternoon from U.S. Bank confirming that her account was in good standing and the error had been corrected.
The South Carolina Department of Revenue website has information on the state's tax laws, including your responsibilities when leasing or renting any property. If you have a question about a portion of the law involving sales and use tax, you can contact the SC DOR for clarification via email or by phone at (803) 896-1420.
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