O.C.G.A. 48-5-48.2 Interpretation

In Apollo Travel Svcs. v. Gwinnett County Bd. of Tax Assessors, 230 Ga. App. 790, 791-792 (3) (498 S.E.2d 297) (1998) the Court held that, under the facts of that case, computers which are leased and are being held in inventory for eventual shipment out of the state are not eligible for a freeport exemption because O.C.G.A. 48-5-48.2 (a) (2) excludes from the definition of "finished goods" items which are the "stock in trade of a retailer." A further refinement in the statute's fine print specifies that goods stored in or near a retail business in this state shall not be considered the "stock in trade of a retailer" when it can be established that they are to be shipped outside the state for resale. The taxpayer in Apollo was a retailer, and it could not fit its inventory of finished goods within the resale exemption to the "stock in trade of a retailer" exclusion from the definition of "finished goods." On appeal, the Court upheld the denial of the exemption, finding that Apollo's inventory did not meet the definition of "inventory of finished goods" as contemplated by O.C.G.A. 48-5-48.2, because the computers were not "goods being held for shipment to final destinations outside Georgia for resale." Id. at 792.