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What Are Goods? What Are Services?

Goods are something that you can use or consume. Goods are owned by the purchaser and can be used once or repeatedly. Goods are always tangible property. Goods are non-taxable, legitimate business expense. Since goods are non-taxable, regardless of the source, International Tax Office is not involved in the check request or payment process for goods purchased from non-USA sources.

Examples of Goods:

• Books

• CDs

• Foodstuff

• Furniture

• Real Estate

• Printers, computers and computer hardware

• Vehicles

• Clothing


Services are actions or an action that someone does for you. Services are intangible property since you don’t receive anything solid and you don’t obtain ownership of the actions taken. The purchaser of a services gets something needed but does not own any tangible, solid or fixed property. Services are taxable, regardless of the source, and Human Resources is involved in the check request or payment process for all services from a non-USA based source.

Examples of Services:

• Use licenses – permission to use property of another (this includes software licenses)

• Consultant services; consultation services

• Labor to install, assemble, dismantle, adjust, repair, or maintain tangible property

• Labor to install, configure, modify or upgrade a computer program

• Maintenance contracts; contracts for service (but not the purchase of a warranty agreement itself)

• Honorarium or speaker fees paid to invited speakers and presenters (travel expenses for invited speakers and presenters are considered non-taxable, business expenses)

• Rental of items to be used in the USA

• Royalty fees/payments

• Patent fees/payments

• Copyright fees/payments

• Travel reimbursements to conference attendees