Florida’s hotel reservation industry recently received an important victory relating to Tourist Development Tax (“TDT”). TDT is a tax imposed on the privilege of renting, leasing or letting “for consideration any living quarters or accommodations in any hotel . . ., or condominium for a term of six months or less.” § 125.0104(3)(a)1., Fla. Stat. Notably, the TDT is due on the consideration paid for occupancy in the county. § 125.0104(3)(a)1., Fla. Stat.
In 2015, the Florida Supreme Court held that the “consideration paid for occupancy” is limited to the actual rental amount paid for occupancy of the room and not to mark-up charges and service charges associated with the reservations. See Alachua County v. Expedia, Inc., 175 So. 3d 370 (Fla. 2015).
The issue in Sarasota Surf & Racquet Club Condominium Assn., Inc. v. Sarasota County, et al., Case No. 2015 CA 002612 NC (Fla. 12th Cir, July 11, 2016) was whether reservation and cleaning fees charged by a condominium association to guests during the reservation process were subject to TDT. The County argued that the fees were part of the total consideration paid for occupancy and therefore subject to TDT. The association argued that, pursuant to Expedia, only the rental amount was subject to TDT, not the reservation and cleaning fees charged in connection with the reservation.