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Transient Occupancy Tax
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ's)
   

Who Is Required to Pay?
Every person (transient) occupying any hotel/motel for any period up to thirty (30) consecutive days within the City of Oakland is required to pay the tax to the operator at the time the rent for occupancy is paid. The rate is 14% of the rent charged.

   

Who Is Responsible for Paying & Remitting?
The hotel/motel operator is responsible for collecting & remitting TOT to the Tax Administrator. The amount of tax shall be reported separately from the amount of rent charged. It is unlawful for any hotel operator to advertise or state in any manner (directly or indirectly) that the tax or any part thereof will be assumed or absorbed by the operator, or that it will not be added to the rent, or that, if added, any part will be refunded.

   

When Do I Register?
The hotel/motel operator must register within 30 days after ownership change, and/or before commencing business.

   

How Do I Report the Tax?
Operators are required to transmit returns, together with payment, on or before the following date (whichever applies):

  • The 10th day following each month if the total transient gross receipts collected for one calendar year is over $100,000
  • The last day of the month following the close of each calendar quarter if the total transient gross receipts collected for one calendar year is between $5,000 & $99,999
  • On or before January 31st of each year if the total transient gross receipts collected one calendar year is under $5,000
   

What are your office hours?
The Transient Occupancy Tax Office is open from Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

   

What If I Pay Late?
Any operator who fails to file the return and remit the tax within the time required shall pay a penalty of twenty-five percent (25%) of the tax. In addition, the operator is subject to pay the interest at the rate of one percent (1%) per month or fraction thereof on the amount of tax, including penalties, from the date on which the remittance first became delinquent until paid. Any payment received without a valid Transient Occupancy Tax Return or any Transient Occupancy Tax Return received without a valid payment is considered delinquent and subject to Penalty and Interest as detailed above. 

   

Who Is Exempt from Paying TOT?

  • Any transient who occupies a hotel/motel for more than thirty (30) consecutive days. Guests who occupy a hotel room for more than thirty (30) consecutive days are considered permanent residents and are exempt from hotel tax for day 31 and greater. There can be no interruption of payment during the period of stay.  Guests who notify the hotel in writing of their intention to stay more than thirty (30) consecutive days will be exempt from the date of notification forward.  Guests who do not notify the hotel in advance of their intent to stay longer than 30 days must pay the tax for the first 30 days and thereafter will be exempt as of day 31 on.
  • Any officer or employee of a foreign or domestic government (City, County, State, or Federal) or domestic corporation who is exempt by reason of federal law or international treaty, provided billing is made directly to and payment is received from the government agency qualifying for this exemption.  If the individual pays themselves in lieu of the government agency, they are not considered exempt. There must be a claim made at the time rent is collected and under penalty of perjury upon a form prescribed by the City of Oakland.
  • Any uncollectible transient rent. However, if these amounts are subsequently collected, the tax must be included in the amount paid to the City of Oakland when filing the next return.
   

What Happens If I Fail to Comply?
FAILURE TO COMPLY WITH THE TRANSIENT OCCUPANCY TAX ORDINANCE REQUIREMENTS IS A MISDEMEANOR. COLLECTION ACTION AGAINST THE OPERATOR AND/OR A LIEN MAY BE FILED AGAINST THE PROPERTY OWNER.

For more information, please contact:

City of Oakland
Revenue Division
150 Frank H. Ogawa Plaza, Suite #5342
Oakland, CA 94612
Tel. (510) 238-7412
Fax. (510) 238-6431

Office Hours: Mon – Fri (8:30am – 4:00pm)

   
 
 
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