MO. Supreme Court Says Caskets Are Taxable
Jefferson City, MO – The Missouri Supreme Court Tuesday decided whether death and taxes are always a sure thing.
Justices ruled burial caskets are subject to sales tax, but the containers into which caskets are lowered - known as vaults - are not taxable.
Buchholz Mortuaries, of St. Louis, had argued that customers don't own a casket until it's buried in the ground with the body and therefore should not be considered personal property subject to sales tax.
The state historically has collected sales taxes on caskets, just as it does on retail items like appliances, furniture or clothing. The assumption is that a casket is a form of personal property.
The court's decision says caskets are personal property, but the vaults are not.