California Guidance on Restaurant Parklets

Monday, March 21st, 2016

Outdoor dining area.

The California State Board of Equalization revised its guidance for the dining and beverage industry to include a section about selling food in parklets.

A "parklet" is a small section of a parking lot converted into a park. Parklets are often used for planting, bicycle parking, or displaying art. Such spaces may also be used as outdoor restaurant seating. Some cities require parklets to be open to the public. Others allow restaurants to make them private, for customer use only.

California taxes a restaurant's sales of food for consumption in the restaurant's facilities. If a restaurant maintains a parklet, the parklet is part of the restaurant's facilities. Sales of food or beverages for consumption in the parklet are taxable. It does not matter if the customer has to go inside to order or if the restaurant provides full service to the parklet. It also does not matter if the restaurant offers additional seating in the parklet. As long as the restaurant maintains the space, the food or drink sold for consumption in the parklet is taxable.

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TTR has a website that companies subscribe to and use daily. This website provides a list of everything that can be bought or sold in the U.S. It provides simple answers to whether buying or selling these items is taxable (subject to a sales tax or other tax), and it provides all the legal authority to support these tax answers.

TTR likes to keep things simple and fun, which is why it has great people who provide help to clients on any support questions they have about transaction tax issues.

Please visit TTR on the web at or call 866.578.8193.

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