212.13 Records required to be kept; power to inspect; audit procedure.—
(1) For the purpose of enforcing the collection of the tax levied by this chapter, the department is hereby specifically authorized and empowered to examine at all reasonable hours the books, records, and other documents of all transportation companies, agencies, or firms that conduct their business by truck, rail, water, aircraft, or otherwise, in order to determine what dealers, or other persons charged with the duty to report or pay a tax under this chapter, are importing or are otherwise shipping in articles or tangible personal property which are liable for said tax. In the event said transportation company, agency, or firm refuses to permit such examination of its books, records, or other documents by the department as aforesaid, it is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. If, however, any subsequent offense involves intentional destruction of such records with an intent to evade payment of or deprive the state of any tax revenues, such subsequent offense shall be a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. The department shall have the right to proceed in any chancery court to seek a mandatory injunction or other appropriate remedy to enforce its right against the offender, as granted by this section, to require an examination of the books and records of such transportation company or carrier.
(2) Each dealer, as defined in this chapter, shall secure, maintain, and keep as long as required by s. 213.35 a complete record of tangible personal property or services received, used, sold at retail, distributed or stored, leased or rented by said dealer, together with invoices, bills of lading, gross receipts from such sales, and other pertinent records and papers as may be required by the department for the reasonable administration of this chapter; all such records which are located or maintained in this state shall be open for inspection by the department at all reasonable hours at such dealer’s store, sales office, general office, warehouse, or place of business located in this state. Any dealer who maintains such books and records at a point outside this state must make such books and records available for inspection by the department where the general records are kept. Any dealer subject to the provisions of this chapter who violates these provisions is guilty of a misdemeanor of the first degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083. If, however, any subsequent offense involves intentional destruction of such records with an intent to evade payment of or deprive the state of any tax revenues, such subsequent offense shall be a felony of the third degree, punishable as provided in s. 775.082 or s. 775.083.
(3) For the purpose of enforcement of this chapter, every manufacturer and seller of tangible personal property or services licensed within this state is required to permit the department to examine his or her books and records at all reasonable hours, and, upon his or her refusal, the department may require him or her to permit such examination by resort to the circuit courts of this state, subject however to the right of removal of the cause to the judicial circuit wherein such person’s business is located or wherein such person’s books and records are kept, provided further that such person’s books and records are kept within the state. When the dealer has made an allocation or attribution pursuant to the definition of sales price in s. 212.02(16), the department may prescribe by rule the books and records that must be made available during an audit of the dealer’s books and records and examples of methods for determining the reasonableness thereof. Books and records kept in the regular course of business include, but are not limited to, general ledgers, price lists, cost records, customer billings, billing system reports, tariffs, and other regulatory filings and rules of regulatory authorities. Such record may be required to be made available to the department in an electronic format when so kept by the dealer. The dealer may support the allocation of charges with books and records kept in the regular course of business covering the dealer’s entire service area, including territories outside this state. During an audit, the department may reasonably require production of any additional books and records found necessary to assist in its determination.
(4) For the further purpose of enforcement of this chapter, every wholesaler of tangible personal property or services licensed within this state is required to permit the department to examine his or her books and records at all reasonable hours. He or she must also maintain such books and records as long as required by s. 213.35 in order to disclose the sales of all goods or services sold, to whom sold, and also the amount of items sold, in such form and in such manner as the department may reasonably require, so as to permit the department to determine the volume of goods or services sold by wholesalers to dealers, as defined under this chapter, and the dates and amounts of sales made. The department may require any manufacturer or wholesaler who refuses to keep such records or to permit such inspection, through the circuit courts of Florida, to submit to such inspection, subject however to the right of removal of the cause as hereinbefore provided in this section.
(5)(a) The department shall send written notification at least 60 days prior to the date an auditor is scheduled to begin an audit, informing the taxpayer of the audit. The department is not required to give 60 days’ prior notification of a forthcoming audit in any instance in which the taxpayer requests an emergency audit.
(b) Such written notification shall contain:
1. The approximate date on which the auditor is scheduled to begin the audit.
2. A reminder that all of the records, receipts, invoices, resale certificates, and related documentation of the taxpayer must be made available to the auditor.
3. Any other requests or suggestions the department may deem necessary.
(c) Only records, receipts, invoices, resale certificates, and related documentation which are available to the auditor when such audit begins shall be deemed acceptable for the purposes of conducting such audit. A resale certificate containing a date prior to the date the audit commences shall be deemed acceptable documentation of the specific transaction or transactions which occurred in the past, for the purpose of conducting an audit.
(d) The provisions of this chapter concerning fraudulent or improper records, receipts, invoices, resale certificates, and related documentation shall apply when conducting any audit.
(e) The requirement in paragraph (a) of 60 days’ written notification does not apply to the distress or jeopardy situations referred to in s. 212.14 or s. 212.15.
(6) Any fair association subject to chapter 616 which leases or licenses its real property to, or allows its assets or property to be used by, any concessionaire, vendor, exhibitor, or licensee shall distribute to the concessionaire, vendor, exhibitor, or licensee a form suggested by the department which requests, at a minimum, the name, business address, and telephone number of the concessionaire, vendor, exhibitor, or licensee; its sales tax registration number; and the amount of the daily revenue that it receives as a result of activities and sales on the fairgrounds or as a result of the use of the assets or other property of the fair association. Each vendor, concessionaire, exhibitor, or licensee that uses a fair association’s real property or other assets shall complete and submit such a form to the management of the fair association daily within 24 hours after the close of a day’s business, and the fair association shall make the completed forms available to the department as requested by the department. The failure of a vendor, concessionaire, exhibitor, or licensee to complete and submit such a form must be reported to the department by the fair association within 24 hours after the form becomes due. This subsection does not require the fair association to be responsible for collecting or remitting the tax owed by any such concessionaire, vendor, exhibitor, or licensee.
History.—s. 13, ch. 26319, 1949; s. 4, ch. 57-109; s. 1, ch. 59-290; s. 5, ch. 61-276; s. 7, ch. 63-253; s. 11, ch. 65-329; s. 5, ch. 65-371; s. 2, ch. 65-420; s. 9, ch. 67-180; ss. 21, 35, ch. 69-106; s. 126, ch. 71-136; s. 1, ch. 82-75; ss. 18, 89, ch. 87-6; s. 57, ch. 87-101; s. 13, ch. 88-119; s. 22, ch. 91-224; s. 1118, ch. 95-147; s. 164, ch. 96-320; s. 16, ch. 99-208; s. 17, ch. 2005-187.