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Orange County

Orange County (West)

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The current sales tax in Orange County, California, is 7.75%. Taxes break down to federal, state, and local levels. So the total you’ll pay can vary from city to city within the county. However, there shouldn’t be any large swings in this rate.

How is all of this figured out? Why do you have to pay these taxes, and what does it mean for local businesses in the area? Read on to learn more.

What Is the Orange County Sales Tax?

The sales tax rate in Orange County is 7.75%. This includes the state sales tax of 6% as well as local taxes.

What About Other Counties in the State?

The state sales tax rate in California is 6%. So, the sales tax rate in Orange County is higher than the state average. However, it’s important to note that many cities and counties in California have their own local sales taxes. 

So, while the state sales tax rate is 6%, the actual rate you’ll pay can be much higher depending on where you are in the state.

The sales tax rate in Los Angeles County is 9.5%. So, the sales tax rate in Orange County is lower than in LA, but some jurisdictions may have slightly cheaper taxes.

What Does This Mean for Businesses in Orange County?

Orange County businesses must collect and remit the 7.75% sales tax to the state. It can be a significant burden for businesses, especially small businesses. In order to comply with the law, companies and SMBs must have a good understanding of the sales tax laws and keep up with any changes.

If you’re a business owner in Orange County, staying on top of your sales tax obligations is important. The penalties for not complying with the law can be severe.

If you have any questions about the sales tax in Orange County or need help with compliance, we suggest speaking with a tax professional.

Sales Taxes By City

In the United States, the federal government and states impose various taxes. Some states also allow local governments, such as cities and counties, to charge their own rates.

As a result, the tax can vary significantly from one location to another. City and county sales tax rates are generally lower than state sales tax rates, but some communities differ from the rest. For example, in Los Angeles County, the city of Pasadena has a higher sales tax rate than the rest of the county.

Most of the cities in Orange County have a 7.75% sales tax. But there are some exceptions. For example, Santa Ana has a 9.25% rate. Make sure to ask about these taxes if you’re making a large purchase. It’s possible you can save some money by visiting another city in the same county.

And as a business, you’ll want to check with your tax professional to make sure you’re collecting the right amount.

What’s the Point of Paying All These Taxes?

In the state of California, tax revenue funds a variety of public services and programs. The state’s general fund, which is the primary account used to pay for everyday expenses, is supported primarily by personal income tax and sales tax revenue. 

This money pays for things like education, health care, transportation, and public safety. Additionally, some of the state’s tax revenue is set aside in separate accounts for specific purposes. 

For example, gas taxes fund road repair and construction, while tobacco taxes pay for health care programs. Ultimately, the state legislature decides how tax revenue is spent in California.

What Isn’t Taxed?

In California, most goods and services are subject to sales tax. However, there are some exceptions. For example, groceries and prescription drugs have no tax. Additionally, some services are not taxed. These include things like haircuts, dental work, and legal services.

How Is the Tax Calculated?

California calculates sales tax as a percentage of the sale price of the good or service. The current sales tax rate in California is 6%. So, if you’re purchasing a good or service that costs $100, the sales tax would be $6.

A List of Items Exempt From Sales Tax

The state applies sales tax to most retail purchases. However, some items are exempt from sales tax, including groceries, prescription drugs, and certain types of clothing.

The reasoning behind these exemptions is that the government considers these goods necessities, and taxing them would impose an undue burden on low-income families. 

Additionally, sales tax exemptions can be a tool to encourage spending on specific products or services. For example, by exempting electric vehicles from sales tax, the state of California is hoping to encourage more people to switch to cleaner forms of transportation.

Ultimately, deciding which items to exempt from sales tax is a complex one, and it is up to each state to determine which exemptions make the most sense for their residents. Here’s a robust list of items exempt from sales tax.

  • Groceries
  • Prescription drugs
  • Haircuts
  • Dental work
  • Some Legal services

Interesting Tax Facts

As a resident of California, you are no stranger to taxes. The state has some of the highest taxes in the nation, and there are a number of quirks that can make filing your taxes complicated. 

For example, California is one of only a few states that taxes capital gains at the total income tax rate. This can be a major shock for residents who are used to paying lower rates on their investment income.

The state is one of only a handful that tax personal income at a higher rate than corporate income. It can be a significant disadvantage for small businesses and entrepreneurs who are trying to get their businesses off the ground. It also has some of the highest sales taxes in the country, which can make everyday purchases more expensive than in other states. 

And property taxes in California are among the highest in the nation, making it difficult for families to afford their homes.

Why Are Taxes So Important to Local Governments?

Local governments rely on taxes to fund critical services, from public safety and infrastructure to schools and social services. Without a steady source of revenue, these vital programs would quickly grind to a halt. 

They also help create a level playing field between businesses, ensuring that all companies contribute their fair share to the community. Finally, taxes are one of the most efficient ways to raise revenue, as the government can directly collect from those who owe them. 

Taxing this way makes it easy for local governments to predict and plan their budgets, which is essential for delivering quality services to residents. In short, taxes are necessary for local governments’ functioning and providing vital services to the community.

What Are the Different Types of Taxes?

There are different types of taxes, each of which funds specific services. The most common type of tax is an income tax levied on individuals and businesses based on their earnings. 

Other common types of taxes include sales, property, and excise taxes. Each of these taxes is collected differently and is used to fund different services. For example, income taxes pay for education and social welfare programs, while sales taxes help public safety and infrastructure projects.

The Sales Tax Breakdown

The sales tax rate in Orange County is made up of four different components: the state sales tax, the county sales tax, the city sales tax, and the special district tax. The state sales tax is 6%, while the county and city rates vary depending on the location. 

The special district tax is an additional percentage that is used to fund specific projects in the county, such as transportation or parks and recreation. All these taxes combine to create the sales tax rate charged on purchases made in Orange County.

Saving Money On Your Taxes

There are a few ways that you can save money on your taxes in Orange County. One way is to take advantage of tax exemptions and deductions. For example, you can deduct the cost of any necessary business equipment that you purchase. 

You can exempt certain items from sales tax, such as groceries or prescription drugs. Finally, you can claim a tax credit for any taxes you have already paid, such as property or income taxes. Use these valuable credits to offset the tax you owe, saving you money in the long run.


How much is Orange County, CA sales tax?

The Orange County sales tax rate is 7.75%. This applies to the item’s total sale price, including any applicable taxes, fees, and surcharges.

Which city has the highest sales tax in Orange County?

Santa Ana has the highest sales tax in the county at 9.25%.

What is the sales tax in Irvine, CA?

The sales tax rate in Irvine is 7.75%.

What is the California sales tax rate for 2022?

The California sales tax rate for 2022 is 6%. 

Orange County sales tax on cars

In the state of California, the sales tax is calculated for where you register the vehicle, not where you buy it.

Los Angeles sales tax

The Los Angeles sales tax rate is 8.25%. 

California sales tax by county

Here’s the full list.

Lowest sales tax in California

The lowest sales tax rate in California is 7.25%. Dozens of cities across many different counties offer this rate.

Anaheim sales tax

The Anaheim sales tax rate is 7.75%.