[USC02] 26 USC Subtitle D, CHAPTER 33, Subchapter B: Communications
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26 USC Subtitle D, CHAPTER 33, Subchapter B: Communications
From Title 26—INTERNAL REVENUE CODESubtitle D—Miscellaneous Excise TaxesCHAPTER 33—FACILITIES AND SERVICES

Subchapter B—Communications

Sec.
4251.
Imposition of tax.
4252.
Definitions.
4253.
Exemptions.
4254.
Computation of tax.

        

Repeal

This subchapter, relating to the tax on communication, was repealed by Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, as amended by Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(3), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(3), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982. In the case of communications services rendered before Nov. 1, 1981, for which a bill has not been rendered before Jan. 1, 1982, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on Dec. 31, 1981. Repeal of this subchapter was not executed in view of the amendments to section 4251 of this title by Pub. L. 96–499, Pub. L. 97–34, Pub. L. 97–248, Pub. L. 98–369, Pub. L. 99–514, Pub. L. 100–203, and Pub. L. 101–508, extending the date in (and finally eliminating) provisions which had reduced the tax to zero after a specified date.

§4251. Imposition of tax

(a) Tax imposed

(1) In general

There is hereby imposed on amounts paid for communications services a tax equal to the applicable percentage of amounts so paid.

(2) Payment of tax

The tax imposed by this section shall be paid by the person paying for such services.

(b) Definitions

For purposes of subsection (a)—

(1) Communications services

The term "communications services" means—

(A) local telephone service;

(B) toll telephone service; and

(C) teletypewriter exchange service.

(2) Applicable percentage

The term "applicable percentage" means 3 percent.

(c) Special rule

For purposes of subsections (a) and (b), in the case of communications services rendered before November 1 of a calendar year for which a bill has not been rendered before the close of such year, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on December 31 of such year.

(d) Treatment of prepaid telephone cards

(1) In general

For purposes of this subchapter, in the case of communications services acquired by means of a prepaid telephone card—

(A) the face amount of such card shall be treated as the amount paid for such communications services, and

(B) that amount shall be treated as paid when the card is transferred by any telecommunications carrier to any person who is not such a carrier.

(2) Determination of face amount in absence of specified dollar amount

In the case of any prepaid telephone card which entitles the user other than to a specified dollar amount of use, the face amount shall be determined under regulations prescribed by the Secretary.

(3) Prepaid telephone card

For purposes of this subsection, the term "prepaid telephone card" means any card or any other similar arrangement which permits its holder to obtain communications services and pay for such services in advance.

(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 503; Pub. L. 85–859, title I, §133(a), Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1289; Pub. L. 86–75, §5, June 30, 1959, 73 Stat. 158; Pub. L. 86–564, title II, §202(a)(2), June 30, 1960, 74 Stat. 290; Pub. L. 87–72, §3(a)(2), June 30, 1961, 75 Stat. 193; Pub. L. 87–508, §3(a)(2), June 28, 1962, 76 Stat. 114; Pub. L. 88–52, §3(a)(2), June 29, 1963, 77 Stat. 72; Pub. L. 88–348, §2(a)(2), June 30, 1964, 78 Stat. 237; Pub. L. 89–44, title III, §302, title VII, §701(b)(2)(B), June 21, 1965, 79 Stat. 145, 156; Pub. L. 89–368, title II, §202(a), Mar. 15, 1966, 80 Stat. 66; Pub. L. 90–285, §1(a)(3), Apr. 12, 1968, 82 Stat. 92; Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(1), (2), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 265; Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(1), (2), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(1), (2), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843; Pub. L. 96–499, title XI, §1151, Dec. 5, 1980, 94 Stat. 2694; Pub. L. 97–34, title VIII, §821, Aug. 13, 1981, 95 Stat. 351; Pub. L. 97–248, title II, §282(a), Sept. 3, 1982, 96 Stat. 568; Pub. L. 98–369, div. A, title I, §26, July 18, 1984, 98 Stat. 507; Pub. L. 99–514, title XVIII, §1801(b), Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2785; Pub. L. 100–203, title X, §10501, Dec. 22, 1987, 101 Stat. 1330–438; Pub. L. 101–508, title XI, §11217(a), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–437; Pub. L. 105–34, title X, §1034(a), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 937; Pub. L. 105–206, title VI, §6010(i), July 22, 1998, 112 Stat. 815.)

Codification

This subchapter, relating to the tax on communications, was repealed by Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, as amended by Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(3), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(3), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982. In the case of communications services rendered before Nov. 1, 1981, for which a bill has not been rendered before Jan. 1, 1982, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on Dec. 31, 1981.

Pub. L. 96–499, title XI, §1151, Dec. 5, 1980, 94 Stat. 2694; Pub. L. 97–34, title VIII, §821, Aug. 13, 1981, 95 Stat. 351; Pub. L. 97–248, title II, §282(a), Sept. 3, 1982, 96 Stat. 568; Pub. L. 98–369, div. A, title I, §26, July 18, 1984, 98 Stat. 507; Pub. L. 99–514, title XVIII, §1801(b), Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2785; Pub. L. 100–203, title X, §10501, Dec. 22, 1987, 101 Stat. 1330–438; Pub. L. 101–508, title XI, §11217(a), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–437, amended this section, relating to the imposition of the tax on communications, extending the date in (and finally eliminating) provisions which had reduced the tax to zero after a specified date, without amending Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, which, as amended, had repealed this subchapter, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982.

Amendments

1998—Subsec. (d)(3). Pub. L. 105–206 substituted "any other similar arrangement" for "other similar arrangement".

1997—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 105–34 added subsec. (d).

1990—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 101–508 substituted "percent." for "percent; except that, with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered after 1990, the applicable percentage shall be zero."

1987—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 100–203 amended par. (2) generally. Prior to amendment, par. (2) read as follows: "The term 'applicable percentage' means—

 
"With respect to amount paid pursuant to

 bills first rendered:

The percentage is:
During 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, or 1987 3  
During 1988 or thereafter 0."

1986—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 99–514 inserted "1985," after "1984," in table.

1984—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 98–369 substituted "During 1983, 1984, 1986, or 1987" for "During 1983, 1984, or 1985" in item relating to an applicable percentage of 3 and substituted "During 1988 or thereafter" for "During 1986 or thereafter" in item relating to an applicable percentage of 0.

1982—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 97–248 added subsec. (a) and struck out former subsec. (a) which provided that there was a tax on communication services specified as local telephone service, toll telephone service, and teletypewriter exchange service, directed that the tax was to be paid by the person paying for such services, and designated the tax as the percentage of the amount paid for the services as set out in the following table:

 
"Amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered—Percent—
Before January 1, 1973 10  
During 1973 9  
During 1974 8  
During 1975 7  
During 1976 6  
During 1977 5  
During 1978 4  
During 1979 3  
During 1980 or 1981 2  
During 1982, 1983, or 1984 1"

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 97–248 added subsec. (b) and struck out former subsec. (b) which provided that the tax imposed by former subsec. (a) would not apply to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after January 1, 1985.

1981—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 97–34, §821(a), substituted "During 1982, 1983, or 1984" for "During 1982" in table.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 97–34, §821(b), extended termination date to Jan. 1, 1985, from Jan. 1, 1983.

1980—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 96–499, §1151(a), substituted "During 1980 or 1981" for "During 1980" and "During 1982" for "During 1981" in table.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 96–499, §1151(b), substituted "1983" for "1982".

1970—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 91–614, §201(b)(1), substituted provisions providing the rate of tax on amounts paid for communication services pursuant to bills first rendered before Jan. 1, 1973 is 10% of such amount, amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered during 1973 is 9% of such amount, during 1974 is 8% of such amount, during 1975 is 7% of such amount, during 1976 is 6% of such amount, during 1977 is 5% of such amount, during 1978 is 4% of such amount, during 1979 is 3% of such amount, during 1980 is 2% of such amount, and during 1981 is 1% of such amount for provisions providing the rate of tax on amounts paid for communication services pursuant to bills first rendered before Jan. 1, 1971 is 10% of such amount, amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered during 1971 is 5% of such amount, during 1972 is 3% of such amount, and during 1973 is 1% of such amount.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 91–614, §201(b)(2), substituted "January 1, 1982" for "January 1, 1974".

1969—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 91–172, §702(b)(1), increased rate of tax on amounts paid for communication services from 5 to 10 percent during 1970, from 3 to 5 percent during 1971, from 1 to 3 percent during 1972, and imposed a 1 percent tax on amounts paid for communication services during 1973.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 91–172, §702(b)(2), substituted "January 1, 1974" for "January 1, 1973".

1968—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 90–364, §105(b)(1), extended from April 30, 1968, through the end of 1969 the period for the imposition of the 10 percent rate, thereby increasing the rate from 1 percent to 10 percent for the period May 1, 1968, through the end of 1968 and from 0 percent to 10 percent for 1969, and imposed a rate of 5 percent during 1970, a rate of 3 percent during 1971, and a rate of 1 percent during 1972.

Pub. L. 90–285 substituted "April 30, 1968" and "May 1, 1968" for "March 31, 1968" and "April 1, 1968" respectively.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 90–364, §105(b)(2), substituted "1973" for "1969".

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 90–364, §105(b)(2), extended provisions calling for treatment of bills not rendered before the end of a year for service rendered before November 1 of that year as having been first rendered on December 31 of that year so as to include years subsequent to 1968 and struck out special provision for the application of subsec. (a) in the case of communication services rendered before March 1, 1968, for which a bill was not rendered before May 1, 1968.

Pub. L. 90–285 substituted "March 1, 1968," for "February 1, 1968", "May 1, 1968" for "April 1, 1968", "April 30, 1968" for "March 31, 1968", and "February 29, 1968" for "January 31, 1968".

1966—Subsec. (a)(2). Pub. L. 89–368, §202(a)(1), increased to 10 percent the schedule of rates for tax imposed for the period up to April 1, 1968, and authorized a reduction to 1 percent for the period after March 31, 1968, and before January 1, 1969.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 89–368, §202(a)(2), conformed subsection to rate reduction schedule alterations by providing that, in the case of communications services rendered before February 1, 1968, for which a bill has not been rendered before April 1, 1968, the bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on March 31, 1968, and, in the case of services rendered after January 31, 1968, and before November 1, 1968, for which a bill has not been rendered before January 1, 1969, the bill shall be treated as having first been rendered on December 31, 1968.

1965—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 89–44, §302, substituted local telephone service, toll telephone service, and teletypewriter exchange service, for general telephone service, toll telephone service, telegraph service, teletypewriter exchange service, wire mileage service, and wire and equipment service as the taxed services and reduced the rate of tax to 3 percent during 1966, 2 percent during 1967, and 1 percent during 1968.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–44, §302, added subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–44, §701(b)(2)(B), repealed former subsec. (b), as in effect June 30, 1965, effective on and after July 1, 1965. Such repealed provision had called for termination of the tax on general telephone service as of July 1, 1965.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 89–44, §302, added subsec. (c).

1964—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 88–348 substituted "July 1, 1965" for "July 1, 1964" in two places.

1963—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 88–52 substituted "July 1, 1964" for "July 1, 1963" in two places.

1962—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 87–508 substituted "July 1, 1963" for "July 1, 1962" in two places.

1961—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 87–72 substituted "July 1, 1962" for "July 1, 1961" in two places.

1960—Subsec. (b)(2). Pub. L. 86–564 substituted "July 1, 1961" for "July 1, 1960" in two places.

1959Pub. L. 86–75 designated former provisions as subsec. (a) and added subsec. (b).

1958Pub. L. 85–859 redesignated "local telephone service" as "general telephone service", "long distance telephone service" as "toll telephone service" and "leased wire, teletypewriter or talking circuit special service" as "teletypewriter exchange service" and "wire mileage service".

Effective Date of 1998 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 105–206 effective, except as otherwise provided, as if included in the provisions of the Taxpayer Relief Act of 1997, Pub. L. 105–34, to which such amendment relates, see section 6024 of Pub. L. 105–206, set out as a note under section 1 of this title.

Effective Date of 1997 Amendment

Pub. L. 105–34, title X, §1034(b), Aug. 5, 1997, 111 Stat. 937, provided that: "The amendments made by this section [amending this section] shall apply to amounts paid in calendar months beginning more than 60 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Aug. 5, 1997]."

Effective Date of 1986 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 99–514 effective, except as otherwise provided, as if included in the provisions of the Tax Reform Act of 1984, Pub. L. 98–369, div. A, to which such amendment relates, see section 1881 of Pub. L. 99–514, set out as a note under section 48 of this title.

Effective Date of 1982 Amendment

Pub. L. 97–248, title II, §282(b), Sept. 3, 1982, 96 Stat. 568, provided that: "The amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall apply with respect to amounts paid for communications services pursuant to bills first rendered after December 31, 1982."

Effective Date of 1968 Amendments

Amendment by Pub. L. 90–364 effective Apr. 30, 1968, see section 105(c) of Pub. L. 90–364, set out as a note under section 6412 of this title.

Amendment by Pub. L. 90–285 effective Mar. 31, 1968, see section 1(b) of Pub. L. 90–285, set out as a note under section 6412 of this title.

Effective Date of 1966 Amendment

Pub. L. 89–368, title II, §202(c), Mar. 15, 1966, 80 Stat. 66, provided that: "The amendments made by subsections (a) [amending this section] and (b) [amending section 4253 of this title] shall apply to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after April 1, 1966, for services rendered on or after such date. In the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after such date for services which were rendered before such date and for which no previous bill was rendered, such amendments shall apply except with respect to such services as were rendered more than 2 months before such date. In the case of services rendered more than 2 months before such date, the provisions of subchapter B of chapter 33 of the Code in effect at the time such services were rendered, subject to the provision of section 701(b)(2) of the Excise Tax Reduction Act of 1965 [see Effective Date of 1965 Amendment note below], shall apply to the amounts paid for such services."

Effective Date of 1965 Amendment

Pub. L. 89–44, title VII, §701(b)(2)(A), June 21, 1965, 79 Stat. 156, provided that: "The amendments made by section 302 [amending this section and sections 4252, 4253, and 4254 of this title] (relating to communication services) shall apply to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after January 1, 1966, for services rendered on or after such date. In the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after January 1, 1966, for services which were rendered before such date and for which no previous bill was rendered, such amendments shall apply except with respect to such services as were rendered more than 2 months before such date. In the case of services rendered more than 2 months before such date, the provisions of subchapter B of chapter 33 of the Code in effect at the time such services were rendered shall apply to the amounts paid for such services."

Effective Date of 1958 Amendment

Pub. L. 85–859, title I, §133(b), Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1292, as amended by Pub. L. 99–514, §2, Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2095, provided that:

"(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2), the amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section and sections 4252 to 4254 of this title] shall apply with respect to amounts paid on or after the effective date prescribed in section (1)(c) of this Act for services rendered on or after such date.

"(2) The amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section and sections 4252 to 4254 of this title] shall not apply with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered before the effective date prescribed in section 1(c) of this Act. In the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after such date for services for which no previous bill was rendered, such amendments shall apply except with respect to such services as were rendered more than 2 months before such date. In the case of services rendered more than 2 months before such date the provisions of subchapter B of chapter 33 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 [formerly I.R.C. 1954] in effect at the time such services were rendered shall apply to the amounts paid for such services."

Plan Amendments Not Required Until January 1, 1989

For provisions directing that if any amendments made by subtitle A or subtitle C of title XI [§§1101–1147 and 1171–1177] or title XVIII [§§1800–1899A] of Pub. L. 99–514 require an amendment to any plan, such plan amendment shall not be required to be made before the first plan year beginning on or after Jan. 1, 1989, see section 1140 of Pub. L. 99–514, as amended, set out as a note under section 401 of this title.

§4252. Definitions

(a) Local telephone service

For purposes of this subchapter, the term "local telephone service" means—

(1) the access to a local telephone system, and the privilege of telephonic quality communication with substantially all persons having telephone or radio telephone stations constituting a part of such local telephone system, and

(2) any facility or service provided in connection with a service described in paragraph (1).


The term "local telephone service" does not include any service which is a "toll telephone service" or a "private communication service" as defined in subsections (b) and (d).

(b) Toll telephone service

For purposes of this subchapter, the term "toll telephone service" means—

(1) a telephonic quality communication for which (A) there is a toll charge which varies in amount with the distance and elapsed transmission time of each individual communication and (B) the charge is paid within the United States, and

(2) a service which entitles the subscriber, upon payment of a periodic charge (determined as a flat amount or upon the basis of total elapsed transmission time), to the privilege of an unlimited number of telephonic communications to or from all or a substantial portion of the persons having telephone or radio telephone stations in a specified area which is outside the local telephone system area in which the station provided with this service is located.

(c) Teletypewriter exchange service

For purposes of this subchapter, the term "teletypewriter exchange service" means the access from a teletypewriter or other data station to the teletypewriter exchange system of which such station is a part, and the privilege of intercommunication by such station with substantially all persons having teletypewriter or other data stations constituting a part of the same teletypewriter exchange system, to which the subscriber is entitled upon payment of a charge or charges (whether such charge or charges are determined as a flat periodic amount, on the basis of distance and elapsed transmission time, or in some other manner). The term "teletypewriter exchange service" does not include any service which is "local telephone service" as defined in subsection (a).

(d) Private communication service

For purposes of this subchapter, the term "private communication service" means—

(1) the communication service furnished to a subscriber which entitles the subscriber—

(A) to exclusive or priority use of any communication channel or groups of channels, or

(B) to the use of an intercommunication system for the subscriber's stations,


regardless of whether such channel, groups of channels, or intercommunication system may be connected through switching with a service described in subsection (a), (b), or (c),

(2) switching capacity, extension lines and stations, or other associated services which are provided in connection with, and are necessary or unique to the use of, channels or systems described in paragraph (1), and

(3) the channel mileage which connects a telephone station located outside a local telephone system area with a central office in such local telephone system,


except that such term does not include any communication service unless a separate charge is made for such service.

(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 503; Pub. L. 85–859, title I, §133(a), Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1290; Pub. L. 87–508, §4(a), June 28, 1962, 76 Stat. 115; Pub. L. 89–44, title III, §302, June 21, 1965, 79 Stat. 145.)

Codification

This subchapter, relating to the tax on communications was repealed by Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, as amended by Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(3), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(3), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982. In the case of communications services rendered before Nov. 1, 1981, for which a bill has not been rendered before Jan. 1, 1982, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on Dec. 31, 1981. Repeal of this subchapter was not executed in view of the amendments to section 4251 of this title by Pub. L. 96–499, Pub. L. 97–34, Pub. L. 97–248, Pub. L. 98–369, Pub. L. 99–514, Pub. L. 100–203, and Pub. L. 101–508, extending the date in (and finally eliminating) provisions which had reduced the tax to zero after a specified date.

Amendments

1965—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted definition of "local telephone service" for definition of "general telephone service".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–44 replaced definition of "toll telephone service" as telephone or radio telephone message or conversation for which there is a toll charge paid within the United States with a definition which defined the term as a telephonic quality communication carrying a varying toll charge depending upon distance and elapsed transmission time and a service entitling the subscriber, upon payment of a periodic charge, to unlimited telephonic communication in an area outside the local telephone system area.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted definition of "teletypewriter exchange service" for definition of "telegraph service".

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted definition of "private communication service" for definition of "teletypewriter exchange service".

Subsecs. (e), (f). Pub. L. 89–44 struck out subsecs. (e) and (f) which defined wire mileage service and wire and equipment service.

1962—Subsec. (e)(1), (2). Pub. L. 87–508 limited wire mileage service to service not used in the conduct of a trade or business.

1958—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted definition of "general telephone service" for provisions which defined "local telephone service" as any telephone service not taxable as long distance telephone service; leased wire; teletypewriter or talking circuit special service; or wire and equipment service, and provided that amounts paid for the installation of instruments, wires, poles, switchboards, apparatus, and equipment shall not be considered amounts paid for service, and that amounts paid for services and facilities which are exempted from other communication taxes by section 4253(b) should not be deemed to be within the definition of local telephone service.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "toll telephone service" for "long distance telephone service" and struck out provisions which defined "long distance telephone service" as a telephone or radio telephone message or conversation for which the toll charge is more than 24 cents.

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "For purposes of this subchapter, the term 'telegraph service' means a telegram" for "As used in section 4251 the term 'telegraph service' means a telegraph".

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted provisions defining "teletypewriter exchange service" for provisions which defined "leased wire, teletypewriter or talking circuit special service".

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted provisions defining "wire mileage service" for provisions which defined "wire and equipment service", which were covered by subsec. (f) of this section.

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 85–859 added subsec. (f). Similar provisions were formerly contained in subsec. (e) of this section.

Effective Date of 1965 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 89–44 applicable to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after January 1, 1966, for services rendered on or after such date but, in the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered after January 1, 1966, for services rendered before such date for which no previous bill had been rendered, applicable except with respect to such services as were rendered more than two months before such date, see section 701(b)(2)(A) of Pub. L. 89–44, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.

Effective Date of 1962 Amendment

Pub. L. 87–508, §4(c), June 28, 1962, 76 Stat. 115, provided that: "The amendments made by subsections (a) and (b) [amending this section and section 4253 of this title] shall apply with respect to services furnished on or after January 1, 1963."

Effective Date of 1958 Amendment

For effective date of amendment made by Pub. L. 85–859, see section 133(b) of Pub. L. 85–859, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.

§4253. Exemptions

(a) Certain coin-operated service

Service paid for by inserting coins in coin-operated telephones available to the public shall not be subject to the tax imposed by section 4251 with respect to local telephone service, or with respect to toll telephone service if the charge for such toll telephone service is less than 25 cents; except that where such coin-operated telephone service is furnished for a guaranteed amount, the amounts paid under such guarantee plus any fixed monthly or other periodic charge shall be subject to the tax.

(b) News services

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251, except with respect to local telephone service, on any payment received from any person for services used in the collection of news for the public press, or a news ticker service furnishing a general news service similar to that of the public press, or radio broadcasting, or in the dissemination of news through the public press, or a news ticker service furnishing a general news service similar to that of the public press, or by means of radio broadcasting, if the charge for such service is billed in writing to such person.

(c) International, etc., organizations

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on any payment received for services furnished to an international organization, or to the American National Red Cross.

(d) Servicemen in combat zone

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on any payment received for any toll telephone service which originates within a combat zone, as defined in section 112, from a member of the Armed Forces of the United States performing service in such combat zone, as determined under such section, provided a certificate, setting forth such facts as the Secretary may by regulations prescribe, is furnished to the person receiving such payment.

(e) Items otherwise taxed

Only one payment of tax under section 4251 shall be required with respect to the tax on any service, notwithstanding the lines or stations of one or more persons are used in furnishing such service.

(f) Common carriers and communications companies

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on the amount paid for any toll telephone service described in section 4252(b)(2) to the extent that the amount so paid is for use by a common carrier, telephone or telegraph company, or radio broadcasting station or network in the conduct of its business as such.

(g) Installation charges

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on so much of any amount paid for the installation of any instrument, wire, pole, switchboard, apparatus, or equipment as is properly attributable to such installation.

(h) Nonprofit hospitals

No tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on any amount paid by a nonprofit hospital for services furnished to such organization. For purposes of this subsection, the term "nonprofit hospital" means a hospital referred to in section 170(b)(1)(A)(iii) which is exempt from income tax under section 501(a).

(i) State and local governmental exemption

Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, no tax shall be imposed under section 4251 upon any payment received for services or facilities furnished to the government of any State, or any political subdivision thereof, or the District of Columbia.

(j) Exemption for nonprofit educational organizations

Under regulations prescribed by the Secretary, no tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on any amount paid by a nonprofit educational organization for services or facilities furnished to such organization. For purposes of this subsection, the term "nonprofit educational organization" means an educational organization described in section 170(b)(1)(A)(ii) which is exempt from income tax under section 501(a). The term also includes a school operated as an activity of an organization described in section 501(c)(3) which is exempt from income tax under section 501(a), if such school normally maintains a regular faculty and curriculum and normally has a regularly enrolled body of pupils or students in attendance at the place where its educational activities are regularly carried on.

(k) Exemption for qualified blood collector organizations

Under regulations provided by the Secretary, no tax shall be imposed under section 4251 on any amount paid by a qualified blood collector organization (as defined in section 7701(a)(49)) for services or facilities furnished to such organization.

(l) Filing of exemption certificates

(1) In general

In order to claim an exemption under subsection (c), (h), (i), (j), or (k), a person shall provide to the provider of communications services a statement (in such form and manner as the Secretary may provide) certifying that such person is entitled to such exemption.

(2) Duration of certificate

Any statement provided under paragraph (1) shall remain in effect until—

(A) the provider of communications services has actual knowledge that the information provided in such statement is false, or

(B) such provider is notified by the Secretary that the provider of the statement is no longer entitled to an exemption described in paragraph (1).


If any information provided in such statement is no longer accurate, the person providing such statement shall inform the provider of communications services within 30 days of any change of information.

(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 504; Pub. L. 85–859, title I, §133(a), Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1290; Pub. L. 86–344, §4(a), Sept. 21, 1959, 73 Stat. 619; Pub. L. 87–508, §4(b), June 28, 1962, 76 Stat. 115; Pub. L. 89–44, title III, §302, June 21, 1965, 79 Stat. 146; Pub. L. 89–368, title II, §202(b), Mar. 15, 1966, 80 Stat. 66; Pub. L. 91–172, title I, §101(j)(27), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 529; Pub. L. 94–455, title XIX, §§1904(a)(6), 1906(b)(13)(A), Oct. 4, 1976, 90 Stat. 1811, 1834; Pub. L. 101–508, title XI, §11217(c)(1), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–438; Pub. L. 109–280, title XII, §1207(c), Aug. 17, 2006, 120 Stat. 1070.)

Codification

Section 1207(c) of Pub. L. 109–280, which directed the amendment of section 4253 without specifying the act to be amended, was executed to this section, which is section 4253 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986, to reflect the probable intent of Congress. See 2006 Amendment notes below.

This subchapter, relating to the tax on communications, was repealed by Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, as amended by Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(3), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(3), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982. In the case of communications services rendered before Nov. 1, 1981, for which a bill has not been rendered before Jan. 1, 1982, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on Dec. 31, 1981. Repeal of this subchapter was not executed in view of the amendments to section 4251 of this title by Pub. L. 96–499, Pub. L. 97–34, Pub. L. 97–248, Pub. L. 98–369, Pub. L. 99–514, Pub. L. 100–203, and Pub. L. 101–508, extending the date in (and finally eliminating) provisions which had reduced the tax to zero after a specified date.

Amendments

2006—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 109–280, §1207(c)(1), added subsec. (k). Former subsec. (k) redesignated (l). See Codification note above.

Subsec. (l). Pub. L. 109–280, §1207(c)(1), redesignated subsec. (k) as (l). See Codification note above.

Subsec. (l)(1). Pub. L. 109–280, §1207(c)(2), substituted "(j), or (k)" for "or (j)". See Codification note above.

1990—Subsec. (k). Pub. L. 101–508 added subsec. (k).

1976—Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 94–455, §1906(b)(13)(A), struck out "or his delegate" after "Secretary".

Subsecs. (i), (j). Pub. L. 94–455, §1904(a)(6), added subsecs. (i) and (j).

1969—Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 91–172 substituted "section 170(b)(1)(A)(iii)" for "section 503(b)(5)".

1966—Subsec. (h). Pub. L. 89–368 added subsec. (h).

1965—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "with respect to local telephone service, or with respect to toll telephone service if the charge for such toll telephone service is less than 25 cents", for "with respect to general telephone service, or with respect to toll telephone service or telegraph service if the charge for such toll telephone service or telegraph service is less than 25 cents".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "local telephone service" for "general telephone service" and "such service" for "such services".

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "International, etc., organizations" for "Certain organizations" in heading.

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 89–44 reenacted subsec. (d) without change.

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "any service" for "toll telephone service, telegraph service, or teletypewriter exchange service".

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted amounts paid for any toll telephone service for amounts paid for wire mileage service, wire and equipment service, and use of any telephone or radiotelephone line or channel which constitutes general telephone service if such line or channel connects stations between any two of which there would otherwise be a toll charge.

Subsec. (g). Pub. L. 89–44 reenacted subsec. (g) without change.

Subsecs. (h) to (j). Pub. L. 89–44 struck out subsecs. (h) to (j), which related to terminal facilities in case of wire mileage service and to certain interior and private communications services.

1962—Subsec. (j). Pub. L. 87–508 added subsec. (j).

1959—Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 86–344 substituted "Common carriers and communications companies" for "Special wire service in company business" in heading, incorporated existing provisions in opening and closing statements and par. (1) and added par. (2).

1958—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "general telephone service, or with respect to toll telephone service or telegraph service if the charge for such toll telephone service or telegraph service is less than 25 cents" for "local telephone service".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "general telephone service, on any payment received from any person for services used" for "local telephone service, upon any payment received from any person for services or facilities utilized".

Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "on any payment received for services furnished to an international organization, or to the American National Red Cross" for "upon any payment received for services or facilities furnished to an international organization, or any organization created by act of Congress to act in matters of relief under the treaty of Geneva of August 22, 1864".

Subsec. (d). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "on any payment received for any toll telephone service" for "with respect to long distance telephone service upon any payment received for any telephone or radio telephone message".

Subsec. (e). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "toll telephone service, telegraph service, or teletypewriter exchange service" for "long distance telephone service or telegraph service" and "in furnishing such service" for "in the transmission of such dispatch, message or conversation".

Subsec. (f). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "any wire mileage service or wire and equipment service as is used in the conduct" for "the service described in sections 4252(d) and (e) as is utilized in the conduct".

Subsecs. (g) to (i). Pub. L. 85–859 added subsecs. (g) to (i).

Effective Date of 2006 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 109–280 effective Jan. 1, 2007, see section 1207(g)(1) of Pub. L. 109–280, set out as a note under section 4041 of this title.

Effective Date of 1990 Amendment

Pub. L. 101–508, title XI, §11217(c)(2), Nov. 5, 1990, 104 Stat. 1388–438, provided that:

"(A) In general.—The amendment made by paragraph (1) [amending this section] shall apply to any claim for exemption made after the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 5, 1990].

"(B) Duration of existing certificates.—Any annual certificate of exemption effective on the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 5, 1990] shall remain effective until the end of the annual period."

Effective Date of 1976 Amendment

Amendment by section 1904(a)(6) of Pub. L. 94–455 effective on first day of first month which begins more than 90 days after Oct. 4, 1976, see section 1904(d) of Pub. L. 94–455, set out as a note under section 4041 of this title.

Effective Date of 1969 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 91–172 effective Jan. 1, 1970, see section 101(k)(1) of Pub. L. 91–172, set out as an Effective Date note under section 4940 of this title.

Effective Date of 1966 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 89–368 applicable to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after April 1, 1966, for services rendered on or after such date and to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after such date for services which were rendered before such date and for which no previous bill was rendered except with respect to such services as were rendered more than two months before such date and, as to services rendered more than 2 months before such date, direction that the provisions of subchapter B of chapter 33 of the Code in effect at the time such services were rendered, be applied, subject to the provision of section 701(b)(2) of the Excise Tax Reduction Act of 1965.

Effective Date of 1965 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 89–44 applicable to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after January 1, 1966, for services rendered on or after such date, but, in the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered after January 1, 1966, for services rendered before such date for which no previous bill had been rendered, applicable except with respect to such services as were rendered more than two months before such date, see section 701(b)(2)(A) of Pub. L. 89–44, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.

Effective Date of 1962 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 87–508 applicable with respect to services furnished on or after Jan. 1, 1963, see section 4(c) of Pub. L. 87–508, set out as a note under section 4252 of this title.

Effective Date of 1959 Amendment

Pub. L. 86–344, §4(b), Sept. 21, 1959, 73 Stat. 619, as amended by Pub. L. 99–514, §2, Oct. 22, 1986, 100 Stat. 2095, provided that:

"(1) Subject to the provisions of paragraph (2), the amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall apply with respect to amounts paid on or after January 1, 1959, for services rendered on or after such date.

"(2) The amendment made by subsection (a) [amending this section] shall not apply with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered before January 1, 1959. In the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after such date for services for which no bill was rendered before such date, such amendment shall apply except with respect to such services as were rendered more than 2 months before such date. In the case of services rendered more than 2 months before such date, the provisions of subchapter B of chapter 33 of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 [formerly I.R.C. 1954] in effect at the time such services were rendered shall apply to the amounts paid for such services."

Effective Date of 1958 Amendment

For effective date of amendment made by Pub. L. 85–859, see section 133(b) of Pub. L. 85–859, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.

§4254. Computation of tax

(a) General rule

If a bill is rendered the taxpayer for local telephone service or toll telephone service—

(1) the amount on which the tax with respect to such services shall be based shall be the sum of all charges for such services included in the bill; except that

(2) if the person who renders the bill groups individual items for purposes of rendering the bill and computing the tax, then (A) the amount on which the tax with respect to each such group shall be based shall be the sum of all items within that group, and (B) the tax on the remaining items not included in any such group shall be based on the charge for each item separately.

(b) Where payment is made for toll telephone service in coin-operated telephones

If the tax imposed by section 4251 with respect to toll telephone service is paid by inserting coins in coin-operated telephones, tax shall be computed to the nearest multiple of 5 cents, except that, where the tax is midway between multiples of 5 cents, the next higher multiple shall apply.

(c) Certain State and local taxes not included

For purposes of this subchapter, in determining the amounts paid for communications services, there shall not be included the amount of any State or local tax imposed on the furnishing or sale of such services, if the amount of such tax is separately stated in the bill.

(Aug. 16, 1954, ch. 736, 68A Stat. 504; Pub. L. 85–859, title I, §133(a), Sept. 2, 1958, 72 Stat. 1291; Pub. L. 89–44, title III, §302, June 21, 1965, 79 Stat. 147; Pub. L. 95–172, §2(a), Nov. 12, 1977, 91 Stat. 1358.)

Codification

This subchapter, relating to the tax on communications was repealed by Pub. L. 90–364, title I, §105(b)(3), June 28, 1968, 82 Stat. 266, as amended by Pub. L. 91–172, title VII, §702(b)(3), Dec. 30, 1969, 83 Stat. 660; Pub. L. 91–614, title II, §201(b)(3), Dec. 31, 1970, 84 Stat. 1843, effective with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after Jan. 1, 1982. In the case of communications services rendered before Nov. 1, 1981, for which a bill has not been rendered before Jan. 1, 1982, a bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on Dec. 31, 1981. Repeal of this subchapter was not executed in view of the amendments to section 4251 of this title by Pub. L. 96–499, Pub. L. 97–34, Pub. L. 97–248, Pub. L. 98–369, Pub. L. 99–514, Pub. L. 100–203, and Pub. L. 101–508, extending the date in (and finally eliminating) provisions which had reduced the tax to zero after a specified date.

Amendments

1977—Subsec. (c). Pub. L. 95–172 added subsec. (c).

1965—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "local telephone service or toll telephone service" for "general telephone service, toll telephone service, or telegraph service".

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 89–44 substituted "toll telephone service" for "toll telephone service or telegraph service" in catchline and text.

1958—Subsec. (a). Pub. L. 85–859 provided that if the person who renders the bill groups individual items for purposes of rendering the bill and computing the tax, then the amount on which the tax with respect to each group shall be based shall be the sum of all items within that group, and the tax on remaining items not included in any such group shall be based on the charge of each item separately.

Subsec. (b). Pub. L. 85–859 substituted "toll telephone service" for "long distance telephone service".

Effective Date of 1977 Amendment

Pub. L. 95–172, §2(b), Nov. 12, 1977, 91 Stat. 1358, provided that: "The amendment made by this section [amending this section] shall take effect only with respect to amounts paid pursuant to bills first rendered on or after the first day of the first month which begins more than 20 days after the date of the enactment of this Act [Nov. 12, 1977]. For purposes of the preceding sentence, in the case of communications services rendered more than 2 months before the effective date provided in the preceding sentence, no bill shall be treated as having been first rendered on or after such effective date."

Effective Date of 1965 Amendment

Amendment by Pub. L. 89–44 applicable to amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered on or after January 1, 1966, for service rendered on or after such date, but, in the case of amounts paid pursuant to bills rendered after January 1, 1966, for services rendered before such date for which no previous bill had been rendered, applicable except with respect to such services as were rendered more than two months before such date, see section 701(b)(2)(A) of Pub. L. 89–44, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.

Effective Date of 1958 Amendment

For effective date of amendment made by Pub. L. 85–859, see section 133(b) of Pub. L. 85–859, set out as a note under section 4251 of this title.