Other Tobacco Products Tax (OTP Tax)

An excise tax is imposed on all smokeless tobacco, cigars and pipe tobacco products (hereinafter referred to as "tobacco products") sold or held for sale by distributors in this state. 

"Tobacco products" means any cigars, cheroots, stogies, smoking tobacco (including granulated, plug cut, crimp cut, ready rubbed and any other kinds and forms of tobacco suitable for  smoking in a pipe or otherwise), chewing tobacco (including cavendish, twist, plug scrap and any other kinds and forms of tobacco suitable for chewing) and snuff, however prepared; and shall include any other articles or products made of tobacco or any substitute therefore, except cigarettes.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

The tax imposed is computed at the rate of eighty percent (80%) of the wholesale cost of tobacco products.  However, in the case of cigars, the tax shall not exceed fifty cents ($0.50) for each cigar.

Distributors License: Every distributor engaging in the business of selling "tobacco products" in Rhode Island is required to secure a license from the Tax Administrator. Distributors must apply using form TOB-APP.

Rhode Island cigarette distributor are not required to secure a separate license for purposes of this law.  The distributor is required to file a monthly "Tobacco Products Tax Return" along with payment on or before the 10th day of each month for the preceding month's tax liabilities.

 

Dealers License: Rhode Island cigarette distributor are not required to secure a separate license for purposes of this law. However, if a dealer wishes to sell OTP but not cigarettes, the entity must register for a dealer’s Cigarette Tax permit, along with filing the Business Application and Registration form to register for a Sales Tax account and obtain both sales & cigarette tax permits. Both Licenses are renewable every year. The law states that both renewal applications must be filed by February 1st each year, renewing the license for the fiscal year beginning July 1st.

Licensed distributors must collect the Other Tobacco Products Tax and sales tax (if applicable) at the time of purchase. On or before the 10th day of each month distributors must file a return (form OTP-1) for the previous calendar month along with a check for the tax collected. (insert a link to the OTP-1)

A dealer or consumer who purchases Other Tobacco Products from a non-Rhode Island licensed distributor must file a return (form OTP-4) within five (5) days of coming into possession of the OTP and must pay the appropriate tax due.

Miscellaneous Links

Resources

Statute: R.I. Gen. Laws § 44-20

Regulation: RI Regulation 280-RICR-20-15-1

Contact Us

Excise Tax Section
Email:  Tax.Excise@tax.ri.gov
Phone:  401.574.8955
Fax:  401.574.8914