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Old 06-22-2018, 11:23 AM
 
3,267 posts, read 2,336,935 times
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Supreme Court rules states can force online retailers to collect sales tax

The Supreme Court ruled Thursday that states can compel retailers to collect sales taxes even if they don't have a physical presence in the state.

We've been selling online for almost 20 years. We collect and pay taxes for our state quarterly, as required by law.

Collecting sales taxes for every state is a simple switch on our websites. However, registering with 49 more states and filing annually, quarterly or monthly is a nightmare I can't imagine. That could be 50-600 returns a year. My own state requires that I break it down by county, which is a very time consuming task.

Better solutions?

The sales tax goes to the state of the seller, not the buyers. We only have to file one return and it would help the infrastructure where the business is being run. States would have more incentives to support small businesses.

Or, we email a total to each customer at the end of the year and let them know how much to claim in out of state purchases on their personal tax returns.
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Old 06-22-2018, 01:16 PM
 
Location: East of Seattle since 1992, originally from SF Bay Area
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That's a good point. The sales tax varies within a state by county, and even city. Within a few weeks I think we'll see companies offering sales tax software for websites, for a big fat price.
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Old 06-22-2018, 05:27 PM
 
608 posts, read 281,196 times
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The cost of compliance works both ways. How many states have enough staff to handle and process tens of thousands of new sales/use tax accounts? I'll bet that most states will set an exemption threshold so that Mary Joe doesn't have to pay that $2.44 she technically owes for selling a wristwatch on eBay.
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Old 06-22-2018, 08:33 PM
 
8,768 posts, read 10,335,902 times
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For what it's worth, the US Supreme Court did not impose state sales tax on online purchases, they just amended SD v Quill to say states can require sales tax payments. Additionally, they did't establish any open end, just a close end. As such their ruling only applies to internet sales with more than $100,000 in annual sales or 200 transactions from a state. When and what they must collect is still a legislative or judicial decision to be decided down the road by each state.

Some states already have laws that require state taxes to be paid on internet sales but prohibits local sales taxes to be charged. The thinking was if the state only collects the fixed state percentage (sharing a portion with the localities), the likelihood was more and more companies would decide its probably the best all around. That has worked as Amazon and many other major online retailers do collect only state taxes but no local taxes.
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Old 06-23-2018, 05:42 AM
 
Location: The Triad (NC)
26,847 posts, read 57,851,863 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KaraG View Post
We've been selling online for almost 20 years.
We collect and pay taxes for our state quarterly, as required by law.
Collecting sales taxes for every state is a simple switch on our websites.

However, registering with 49 more states and filing annually, quarterly or monthly is a nightmare
Only because it hasn't been required up to now.

Had the good sense laws been in place 20 years ago (or more) as they should have been...
I assure you the software required would have been in place a very long time ago too.
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Old 06-23-2018, 09:40 AM
 
3,560 posts, read 1,818,256 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hemlock140 View Post
That's a good point. The sales tax varies within a state by county, and even city. Within a few weeks I think we'll see companies offering sales tax software for websites, for a big fat price.
That software has been available for years.
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Old 06-23-2018, 03:26 PM
 
33,046 posts, read 20,714,185 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rabrrita View Post
For what it's worth, the US Supreme Court did not impose state sales tax on online purchases, they just amended SD v Quill to say states can require sales tax payments. Additionally, they did't establish any open end, just a close end. As such their ruling only applies to internet sales with more than $100,000 in annual sales or 200 transactions from a state. When and what they must collect is still a legislative or judicial decision to be decided down the road by each state.

Some states already have laws that require state taxes to be paid on internet sales but prohibits local sales taxes to be charged. The thinking was if the state only collects the fixed state percentage (sharing a portion with the localities), the likelihood was more and more companies would decide its probably the best all around. That has worked as Amazon and many other major online retailers do collect only state taxes but no local taxes.

Do individual sellers have to pay when they use a large platform?

If I use eBay to sell $1,000 of goods to California, does eBay charge that tax to my CA buyers? This benefits eBay because adding in the sales tax would inflate Final Value Fees, which I don't consider fair to sellers.
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Old 06-23-2018, 05:27 PM
 
Location: Yucaipa, California
9,599 posts, read 17,702,578 times
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The state of ca will now be able to collect sales tax from all states. They expect 1 billion dollars a year in revenue. That will most likely go towards the public employees pensions, etc. I was going to buy (later this year) a $300.00 item from another state on amazon (from a seller). That will cost me a extra $24.00. That stinks.
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Old 06-23-2018, 05:56 PM
 
Location: Paranoid State
12,679 posts, read 9,425,981 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MrRational View Post
Only because it hasn't been required up to now.

Had the good sense laws been in place 20 years ago (or more) as they should have been...
I assure you the software required would have been in place a very long time ago too.
The software existed as far back as 1980.
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Old 06-24-2018, 10:06 AM
 
Location: Paranoid State
12,679 posts, read 9,425,981 times
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It is a boon for Amazon and eBay.

For decades the law has prevented America’s 10,000 taxing authorities from imposing collection burdens on people with no physical presence in their jurisdictions. The court has now repealed that sensible standard and invited a million bureaucratic definitions to bloom.

The power to tax also means the power to impose reporting rules and the power to audit. Now state and city governments are free to impose burdens that crush distant small businesses and there will be no political accountability—because the tax collectors will be oppressing people with no representation in the abusive jurisdiction.

The WSJ quotes one online retailer:

Quote:
“Trying to follow all the thousands of laws of tax jurisdictions across the country would put us out of business. That is all I would do all day,” said Cyndi Zlotow, who sells about $250,000 annually of apparel and other goods on eBay, Amazon and Etsy Inc. from near Chicago.
So, those small retailers will end up paying someone like Amazon to handle all the work.
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