Every time you purchase taxable tangible goods, whether in person, over the phone, or on the Internet, the purchase is subject to Maryland's 6 percent sales and use tax if you use the merchandise in Maryland and 9 percent on alcoholic beverages (see rate chart). State sales taxes apply to purchases made in Maryland while the use tax refers to the tax on goods purchased out of state. If you make a tax-free purchase out of state and need to pay Maryland's 6 percent use tax or 9 percent alcoholic beverage tax, file the Consumer Use Tax Return, with your payment, by the appropriate due date.
If you do not pay Maryland's use tax on purchases made out of state, you could be liable for penalties and interest in addition to the tax due.
Every state that has a sales tax also has a use tax. Maryland's use tax protects Maryland businesses from unfair competition. Local businesses would be at a competitive disadvantage if consumers were entitled to a 6 percent discount on items purchased from out of state businesses.