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Tax Calculations for Messaging, Voice Calls, and Video… | SignalWire

Tax Calculations for Messaging, Voice Calls, and Video Calls

Product Manager

Joe Conrad

SignalWire is one of the first companies worldwide to calculate all call-related taxes in real-time upon spending. This means there is no longer a 30-day lag in calculating your true tax liability.

Any services that connect with the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) are taxed at one rate while services that rely exclusively on SignalWire Communication APIs are taxed at a different rate that takes into account appropriate bifurcation rates (the percentage split between software and VoIP costs related to a call).

In the United States, telephony-related taxes include the Federal Universal Service Fund (FUSF), an FCC Regulatory Fee. The USF fee is a calculation utilizing the current USF rates (which vary quarterly - current rates can be found at the FCC website), a Safe Harbor percentage (using a standardized rate to determine the percentage of a call that is to be taxed as inter-state and intra-state), and the bifurcation rate for the selected service.

In addition to this, state and local jurisdictions might apply additional taxes such as communications service tax and Statutory Gross Receipts tax.

It is important to note that the billing address of your primary credit card on file with SignalWire is used to determine various tax rates.

With the complexity around the multitude of variables that play into calculating taxes for a single call, it is impossible for us to provide a single aggregate tax for a given billing period.