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Florida DOR’s 2022 Legislative Package BAD for Florida Businesses


The Florida Department of Revenue (FL DOR) recently released its proposed legislative package for the upcoming 2022 Legislative Session, and most of the concepts are BAD for Florida Businesses. This is somewhat ironic in that one of the heads of the FL DOR, the Governor, promotes Florida as being “Open for Business” and has been known to pursue out-of-state businesses to relocate to Florida under the guise that the state is “business friendly.” The current executive management group at the FL DOR must have missed the Governor’s message when they developed the 2022 Legislative Package. This same management team has stated many times in the past that FL DOR does not set tax policy in this State, but rather just administers the laws passed by the Legislature. Not only does the proposed legislation fly in the face of the Governor’s promotion of Florida being business friendly, BUT the FL DOR is ALSO trying to set tax policy and attempting to make it easier for agency to pursue past business unfriendly policies.

Members of the Florida Bar, including members of the Tax Section, the FICPA, the Florida Chamber of Commerce, local Chambers of Commerce, Associated Industries of Florida, the Florida Retail Federation, Florida TaxWatch, the Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association and others need to review and pay close attention the progress of Senate Bill __ and House Bill __ in the upcoming session. This bill, that is literally handed to the sponsors on a silver platter from the FL DOR, is clearly attempting to set tax policy in this State, making it more difficult for businesses to defend themselves, while making it easier for the FL DOR to exercise unfettered discretion in how it treats Florida taxpayers. For example, there are several provisions in the bills that expand the statute of limitations in favor of the Department and against businesses. There are numerous provisions that increase the administrative and subpoena power of the Department that expand the concept that the Department’s assessments deserve a presumption of correctness regardless of the competence or behavior of the Department’s auditors and further limit a taxpayer’s ability to defend itself while promoting the principle that taxpayers should be “presumed guilty until proven innocent.” There is even a provision in these concepts that would allow the FL DOR and the Department of Business & Professional Regulation to immediately suspend, without due process, the resale certificate and business license for a business that sells alcoholic beverages and tobacco. Doesn’t sound too “Business Friendly in Florida”?

The Administrative Law Section of the Florida Bar also needs to pay close attention to parts of this legislative package, specifically where the FL DOR asks the Legislature to basically allow it to draft and implement rules that don’t have to follow all the normal rulemaking requirements under Chapter 120. In one particularly troubling provision, FL DOR wants to exempt itself from the requirement to have specific rulemaking authority set forth in the statute it is attempting to implement in its rules, and rather be allowed to proceed with mere general rulemaking authority that the Courts have declared is insufficient.

There are some concepts in the package that are typical clarification and federal compliance matters that are common and proper in a FL DOR legislative package that is attempting to ease the burden of administering the law and there are even a couple provisions that make it easier for taxpayers to comply. There is one provision that appears to allow the FL DOR to re-open an audit, which the FL DOR claims they currently don’t have the discretion to do once an assessment becomes final. However, this ability to re-open an audit will only be allowed in very limited circumstances and must be requested within a hard limit of 180 days of the assessment becoming final. This requirement may not ultimately be “taxpayer friendly” as the type of FL DOR errors that should require the Department to re-open an audit are often not discovered within such a limited period.

As the saying goes, “The Devil is in the Details”, and there is a LOT of Devil in this FL DOR Legislative package. Please review SB-__ and HB-__ carefully and be prepared to reach out to your Legislator, members of the Florida Bar, your Lawyer, the FICPA, your accountant or CPA, and/or other professional organizations to let them know that FL DOR’s 2022 Legislative Package will be BAD for Florida Businesses.

If you, your organization, your lawyer or other representative would like to talk with us further about these “Bad for Florida Business” bills, please contact our office to discuss which politicians and organizations would be the most help.

At the Law Office of Moffa, Sutton, & Donnini, PA, our primary practice area is Florida taxes, with a very heavy emphasis in Florida sales and use tax. We have defended Florida businesses against the Florida Department of Revenue since 1991 and have over 100 years of cumulative sales tax experience within our firm. Our partners are both CPAs/Accountants and Attorneys, so we understand both the accounting side of the situation as well as the legal side. We represent taxpayers and business owners from the entire state of Florida. Call our offices today for a FREE INITIAL CONSULTATION to confidentially discuss how we can help put this nightmare behind you.



2022 Florida Sales Tax Commercial Rent, published December 08, 2021, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq.

GO TO JAIL FOR NOT PAYING FLORIDA SALES TAX?, published November 3, 2013, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq.

FL DOR USES “CALLZILLA” TO HARRASS TAXPAYERS, published July 28, 2013, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq.

How to Calculate FL Sales Tax on Rent, published April 11, 2019, by Michael Moffa, Esq.

Florida Sales Tax Informal Written Protest, published November 17, 2018, by James Sutton, CPA, Esq.

Protest a FL Sales and Use Tax Audit, published August 8, 2019, by Matthew Parker, Esq.

Florida Sales Tax – Voluntary Disclosure Program, published April 9, 2019, by Jeanette Moffa, Esq.