Illinois Department of Revenue
 
 
Individuals
 
 
 
 
 

Use Tax Amnesty Questions and Answers

 
 

What is Use Tax Amnesty?
Amnesty provides the opportunity for taxpayers to pay certain outstanding tax liabilities and to have penalties and interest waived for taxes paid in full during the amnesty period.  Use Tax Amnesty covers purchases you made from July 1, 2004, through December 31, 2010. To avoid penalty and interest you must file and pay your use tax from January 1, 2011, through October 15, 2011.

How do I participate in the Use Tax Amnesty?
You must file a separate paper Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for each year (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010) that you have a use tax liability and write “Amnesty” in red on the top of each form.

If I file an ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, during the amnesty period, does it satisfy my liability with the Department of Revenue?
If the Department of Revenue finds that you owe additional tax, we may assess the additional tax plus applicable penalties and interest. We conduct routine audits based on information received from third parties, including the U.S. Customs Service and other states.

How do I calculate the amount of use tax I owe during the amnesty period?

To complete each form, you must figure your amount of purchases one of the following ways:
  • If you know the amount of your purchases, follow the instructions on Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return.
  • If you do not know the amount of your purchases, you may estimate that amount by using the chart below.
    Note: Use the corresponding Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) for each year that you owe use tax. As an example, if you owe use tax for tax year 2005, use your 2005 AGI.
  • If you know the amount of some of your purchases but not all, add the known amount of purchases to the estimated amount from Column A below for Form ST-44, Line 1a, and multiply that amount by .0625 for Form ST-44, Line 1b.

Note:
This chart is only an estimate.  If we find that you owe additional tax, we may assess the additional tax plus applicable penalties and interest.

If your AGI (IL-1040, Line 1) is Column A 
this is your estimated purchases for ST-44, Line 1a
Column B 
this is your estimated use tax for ST-44, Line 1b
$0 - $10,000 $48 $3
$10,001 - $20,000 $144 $9
$20,001 - $30,000 $240 $15
$30,001 - $40,000 $336 $21
$40,001 - $50,000 $432 $27
$50,001 - $75,000 $608 $38
$75,001 - $100,000 $832 $52
>$100,000 Multiply AGI by .0096 Multiply Column A by .0625

Does Use Tax Amnesty apply to businesses?

No, Use Tax Amnesty does not apply to business taxpayers. However, business taxpayers are liable for use tax. Businesses that are already registered as retailers can report and pay their use tax using Form ST-1, Sales and Use Tax Return.  Businesses that are not required to be registered as retailers can report and pay their Illinois Use Tax on Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return.

Are there any other taxpayers that are excluded from the Use Tax Amnesty program?
Other taxpayers that are excluded from the amnesty program are those taxpayers who are
  • a party to any criminal investigation, or any civil or criminal litigation that is pending in any circuit court or appellate court, or the Supreme Court of Illinois for nonpayment, delinquency, or fraud in relation to eligible taxes; or
  • under audit for eligible taxes or who are contacted in writing by the department concerning eligible taxes prior to reporting and paying the eligible taxes.

What type of payment is acceptable to pay my Use Tax?
Payments can be made, along with your Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, by
  • Cash,
    • Cash  is only accepted at the following two Illinois Department of Revenue locations:
            • the cashier’s office in the JRTC Building, Concourse level, 100 West Randolph Street, Chicago, IL 60601, or
            • the cashier’s office in the Willard Ice Building, 101 West Jefferson Street, Springfield, IL 62702.
  • Check,
    • Guaranteed remittance, or
    • ACH Debit.

Note: Make check(s) payable to the Illinois Department of Revenue.

Where do I mail my Amnesty Use Tax payment?
You can mail your payment along with your Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, to

ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE
RETAILERS’ OCCUPATION TAX
SPRINGFIELD IL 62776-0001

Can I file my Amnesty Use Tax liability electronically?
No, you must file a separate paper Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for each year (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010) that you have a use tax liability and write “Amnesty” in red on the top of the form.

Can I file and pay my Amnesty Use Tax Liability on my IL-1040, Individual Income Tax Return?
No, you must file a separate paper Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for each year (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010) that you have a use tax liability and write “Amnesty” in red on the top of the form.

How do I correct my ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, if I have changes to my use tax liability?
You can correct your Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, by sending signed, written correspondence detailing the correction requested to

ILLINOIS DEPARTMENT OF REVENUE
PO BOX 19013
SPRINGFIELD IL 62794-9013

Do I need to file a separate ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for each year (July 1, 2004 through December 31, 2010) that I have a use tax liability to qualify for amnesty? 
Yes, you must file a Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for each year that you have a use tax liability and writeAmnesty in red on the top of the form.

Does my Cigarette Use Tax liability also qualify for amnesty?
No, Cigarette Use Tax is not included in the current amnesty.

Can I qualify for the amnesty program if I file and pay my use tax liability and Cigarette Use Tax liability together on Form RC-44?

No, you must file Form ST-44, Illinois Use Tax Return, for the sales use tax portion of the liabilities if you want to participate in the Illinois (sales) Use Tax Amnesty Program.  Your Cigarette Use Tax liability would still need to be reported on Form RC-44. 
 
 
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