Electronic Waste Recycling (eWaste) Fee - FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions: Information for retailers on the Fee Program, Collection, and Rates

  1. What is the Electronic Waste Recycling Fee?
  2. How is the fee revenue used?
  3. Which sales and products are subject to the fee?
  4. How will I know which devices are subject to the fee?
  5. Are any sales exempt from the fee?
  6. How much is the fee?
  7. Is the fee subject to sales tax?

  1. What is the Electronic Waste Recycling Fee?

    The Electronic Waste Recycling (eWaste) Fee is a fee imposed on the retail sale or lease of certain electronic products that have been identified by the Department of Toxic Substances Control (DTSC) as covered electronic devices (CEDs). Products covered by the fee include a variety of video display devices. To remit the fee, a retailer of CEDs must register with the Board of Equalization. A retailer may retain 3 percent of the eWaste fee it collects as reimbursement for costs associated with the collection of the fee.

  2. How is the fee revenue used?

    The fee was established to help pay for the safe recycling of video display devices such as computer monitors and televisions, which contain hazardous materials. Revenues from the fee are used to safely recycle the types of products covered by the fee. For more information on the recycling of electronic products and the use of the fee revenue, please go to: http://www.erecycle.org/.

  3. Which sales and products are subject to the fee?

    Effective January 1, 2005, the fee is due on the retail sale or lease of a new or refurbished* CED that has a screen size of more than 4 inches measured diagonally and that has been identified in the regulations adopted by the DTSC. Currently, the CEDs indentified in the regulations include:

    • Televisions that contain cathode ray tubes.
    • Computer monitors that contain cathode ray tubes or use liquid crystal displays (LCD).
    • Laptop computers.
    • "Bare" cathode ray tubes or any other product that contains a cathode ray tube.
    • Televisions containing LCD screens, which includes any device containing an LCD display greater than 4 inches measured diagonally (viewable size), that has television tuner capability and can process a broadcast, cable, or satellite transmitted television signal (added July 1, 2005).
    • Plasma televisions (added July 1, 2005).
    • Portable DVD Players with LCD screens (added July 1, 2007).

    *Refurbished items are products the manufacturer has tested and returned to a condition that meets factory specifications and have been repackaged and labeled as refurbished.

  4. How will I know which devices are subject to the fee?

    See the general definition in response to question 3 above. Manufacturers are required to let retailers know which of their products have been identified as CEDs. New products may be identified by the DTSC and added to the regulations after they have been tested. Any new CEDs identified by DTSC and added to the regulations will become subject to the fee effective July 1, of the following year in which the new CEDs were added to the regulations. For more information, contact the manufacturer or the Board of Equalization's Special Taxes and Fees at (800) 400-7115, Monday through Friday, 8:00 AM through 5:00 PM, excluding State holidays.

  5. Are any sales exempt from the fee?

    Yes. The fee does not apply to the sale of a video display device that is any of the following:

    • Used and not refurbished.
    • Part of a motor vehicle, as defined in Vehicle Code section 415, or a component part of a motor vehicle assembled by or for a vehicle manufacturer or franchised dealer. This includes replacement parts for use in a motor vehicle.
    • Is contained within, or a part of a piece of industrial, commercial, or medical equipment, including monitoring or control equipment.
    • Contained within a clothes washer, clothes dryer, refrigerator, refrigerator and freezer, microwave oven, conventional oven or range, dishwasher, room air conditioner, dehumidifier, or air purifier.
    • A sale for resale.
    • Shipped by you to a location outside of California.

    You must maintain records to document any exempt sale, just like you do when you make a sale that is exempt from sales tax. Click here for help with information on sales for resale. Click here for information on sales of products shipped directly to locations outside California.

  6. How much is the fee?

    The fee is based upon the viewable size of the video display, measured diagonally. Click here for the rate. You must itemize the fee amount on the purchaser's receipt and identify it as the electronic waste recycling fee or eWaste recycling fee.

  7. Is the fee subject to sales tax?

    No.

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