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https://www.al.com/news/index.ssf/2018/06/scotus_states_can_...

The ruling overturns a Supreme Court's 1992 decision.

So if you live in MA for example and shop at cool stuff (with no physical presence in MA) you'll likely at some point see cool stuff collecting MA sales tax.
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going to be fun for small retailers that do online sales to manage this, hopefully the retail systems they utilize will be able to account for this. will be curious how this works out, and will be curious if we see anyone hurt by this
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I was a journalist at community newspapers when internet commerce first started gaining hold. The fact online merchants didn't have to charge sales tax actually had an impact on local retailers, and that only grew as things like free shipping (think Amazon Prime) became a factor. I've been an advocate for requiring online retailers to collect sales tax for some time, not for the sake of the cities and states charging the taxes but to eliminate an unfair advantage against locally owned businesses. No idea, at this point, if it will change much on the retail landscape, but I'll be interested to see how it unfolds.
 
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Gene Moore
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jwspiker wrote:
going to be fun for small retailers that do online sales to manage this, hopefully the retail systems they utilize will be able to account for this. will be curious how this works out, and will be curious if we see anyone hurt by this

The problem isn't going to be collecting the tax; the problem will be paying the tax. My wife has an Etsy business. Etsy automatically collects sales tax when someone in Missouri buys something. That's the easy part. At the end of the year, however, she then has to fill out a Missouri sales tax return and pay that money to the state. That part isn't automatic, and if she's going to have to fill out 50 sales tax returns every year, her tax preparer (me) is going to be very upset.

Amazon and other big online retailers can handle this. It's the small retailers that will be slapped in the face by it.
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lwdgames wrote:
jwspiker wrote:
going to be fun for small retailers that do online sales to manage this, hopefully the retail systems they utilize will be able to account for this. will be curious how this works out, and will be curious if we see anyone hurt by this

The problem isn't going to be collecting the tax; the problem will be paying the tax. My wife has an Etsy business. Etsy automatically collects sales tax when someone in Missouri buys something. That's the easy part. At the end of the year, however, she then has to fill out a Missouri sales tax return and pay that money to the state. That part isn't automatic, and if she's going to have to fill out 50 sales tax returns every year, her tax preparer (me) is going to be very upset.

Amazon and other big online retailers can handle this. It's the small retailers that will be slapped in the face by it.


Yep. It’s situations like this (and GDPR is another current example) where our “old people run the government” is a huge problem. You need to provide the technical mechanisms to make things like this feasible for small businesses.
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Daniel Harris
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Not knowing a ton about the sales tax piece of things (although I am a CPA), does that mean a company must register to withold and remit sales tax in every state? I know sometimes this process can take a little time.

Here in Florida, we also have county imposed sales tax. Does this go further than states? Are vendors going to be required to determine county and county sales tax rate?

This seems like a logistical nightmare. I understand it, I agree with the principal behind it, I just dont see how putting this burden on business owners is the right way to go about this.
 
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lwdgames wrote:
The problem isn't going to be collecting the tax; the problem will be paying the tax. My wife has an Etsy business. Etsy automatically collects sales tax when someone in Missouri buys something. That's the easy part. At the end of the year, however, she then has to fill out a Missouri sales tax return and pay that money to the state. That part isn't automatic, and if she's going to have to fill out 50 sales tax returns every year, her tax preparer (me) is going to be very upset.

not 50... Delaware, Montana, Oregon, and New Hampshire do not have a general sales tax.

But yea 47 would be a lot still... interesting that Etsy puts the responsibility on the individual small businesses... I would have thought Etsy itself would be the one to collect (and they pay) the sales taxes?

On the other hand if the States follow the South Dakota law that triggered this SCOTUS ruling then only "out-of-state sellers who do more than $100,000 of business in the state or more than 200 transactions annually with state residents" which may end up exempting lots (most?) etsy sellers... though that could be problematic as lets say you as a seller are not collecting sales tax on orders you are shipping to SD and then with in same calendar year you receive the 200th order....
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Gene Moore
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deehizzle wrote:
Here in Florida, we also have county imposed sales tax. Does this go further than states? Are vendors going to be required to determine county and county sales tax rate?

That part is probably going to come down to state laws. In Missouri, we only have to collect the state portion of the tax from an online sale, but my wife collects the county and city tax as well when she sells product at a craft show.
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deehizzle wrote:
Here in Florida, we also have county imposed sales tax. Does this go further than states? Are vendors going to be required to determine county and county sales tax rate?

I would assume so since vendors who already have to (because they have physical presence in the State) collect for example here in FL already collect State and County (and I assume local if any) level sales tax.

Though probably not a big nightmare... software (even freeware?) is available... https://www.capterra.com/sales-tax-software/
 
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Bill Cook
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deehizzle wrote:
This seems like a logistical nightmare.


Not to be argumentative... but I don't really think that looking up the country by address, and the tax rate by county is a "logistical" nightmare. Pretty sure every platform or vendor selling storefront software will have this built in quickly and easily.
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lwdgames wrote:
jwspiker wrote:
going to be fun for small retailers that do online sales to manage this, hopefully the retail systems they utilize will be able to account for this. will be curious how this works out, and will be curious if we see anyone hurt by this

The problem isn't going to be collecting the tax; the problem will be paying the tax. My wife has an Etsy business. Etsy automatically collects sales tax when someone in Missouri buys something. That's the easy part. At the end of the year, however, she then has to fill out a Missouri sales tax return and pay that money to the state. That part isn't automatic, and if she's going to have to fill out 50 sales tax returns every year, her tax preparer (me) is going to be very upset.

Amazon and other big online retailers can handle this. It's the small retailers that will be slapped in the face by it.


^^^^This^^^^

Collecting taxes is the easy part, even for local and county taxes, depending your e-commerce platform. (e.g. Shopify).

Remitting those taxes are the hard part. As far as I know, this service is not provided by any e-commerce platform. It will be interesting (in the worst possible way) to see how this plays out.
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Just curious how this will impact kickstarter game. I backed a few projects but none of them need to pay tax.
 
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squirrelhenge wrote:
I was a journalist at community newspapers when internet commerce first started gaining hold. The fact online merchants didn't have to charge sales tax actually had an impact on local retailers, and that only grew as things like free shipping (think Amazon Prime) became a factor. I've been an advocate for requiring online retailers to collect sales tax for some time, not for the sake of the cities and states charging the taxes but to eliminate an unfair advantage against locally owned businesses. No idea, at this point, if it will change much on the retail landscape, but I'll be interested to see how it unfolds.


You could argue that they waited until online business had effectively killed small local shops to remove their advantage. Too late.
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In a normal civilized country, any shop (online or brick-and-mortar) has to collect tax (full tax) and to reverse them to the state. That's how it works in the majority in the countries on this planet.
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fredmanson wrote:
In a normal civilized country, any shop (online or brick-and-mortar) has to collect tax (full tax) and to reverse them to the state. That's how it works in the majority in the countries on this planet.


Was the anti-American sentiment really necessary?

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cheng wrote:
fredmanson wrote:
In a normal civilized country, any shop (online or brick-and-mortar) has to collect tax (full tax) and to reverse them to the state. That's how it works in the majority in the countries on this planet.


Was the anti-American sentiment really necessary?



Careful, your going to get slapped by the local thought police! ninja
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squirrelhenge wrote:
I was a journalist at community newspapers when internet commerce first started gaining hold. The fact online merchants didn't have to charge sales tax actually had an impact on local retailers, and that only grew as things like free shipping (think Amazon Prime) became a factor. I've been an advocate for requiring online retailers to collect sales tax for some time, not for the sake of the cities and states charging the taxes but to eliminate an unfair advantage against locally owned businesses. No idea, at this point, if it will change much on the retail landscape, but I'll be interested to see how it unfolds.


Local businesses already have advantages as well "Get it now" vs. wait for shipping. Each business should compete on the terms it exists.

The ONLY way this makes sense (and even then it's stupid) is that if I am in GA and buy from CoolStuff (in FL), they charge me FLORIDA sales tax. The transaction is taking place IN FLORIDA (I'm sending my order through the webs to them there). Just because I'm in GA doesn't mean the sale is in GA.

Doing this the reverse creates a hardship on small businesses (and large) having to file sale tax documents for all 50 states.

Stupid stupid stupid.

But then again SCOTUS has been making many stupid decisions the last six years or so.
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Daniel Harris
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klkitchens wrote:

The ONLY way this makes sense (and even then it's stupid) is that if I am in GA and buy from CoolStuff (in FL), they charge me FLORIDA sales tax. The transaction is taking place IN FLORIDA (I'm sending my order through the webs to them there). Just because I'm in GA doesn't mean the sale is in GA.


I believe alot of states use a Sales and Use Tax model. If no sales tax is charged, it's up to the buyer to report the purchase and pay use tax for the right to use goods in their state. I know very few people that actually do this.

However, in a perfect world, in the situation you describe above means that you should be paying use tax in Georgia. If CoolStuff began charging you Florida sales tax, would Georgia would lose out on potential use tax? I can't imagine Georgia letting that fly!

I agree with you there is definitely a problem. Some state is going to benefit, but unfortunately it's going to be end users and business owners that are going to pay the price. I have a feeling there is going to be alot more debate on this!
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deehizzle wrote:
However, in a perfect world, in the situation you describe above means that you should be paying use tax in Georgia. If CoolStuff began charging you Florida sales tax, would Georgia would lose out on potential use tax? I can't imagine Georgia letting that fly!


Yeah, don't care. I'm talking about common sense... not laws as they currently stand. Sales tax should be based on the location of the sale. I'm sure GA would want the income, but tough. Encourage businesses to operate in your state and it will balance out.
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klkitchens wrote:
deehizzle wrote:
However, in a perfect world, in the situation you describe above means that you should be paying use tax in Georgia. If CoolStuff began charging you Florida sales tax, would Georgia would lose out on potential use tax? I can't imagine Georgia letting that fly!
Yeah, don't care. I'm talking about common sense... not laws as they currently stand. Sales tax should be based on the location of the sale. I'm sure GA would want the income, but tough. Encourage businesses to operate in your state and it will balance out.

having lived over 1/2 a century in a state with no general sales tax that's a horrible idea... ie. having taxes based on location of the business vs. location where product is being delivered.
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JeffyJeff wrote:
klkitchens wrote:
deehizzle wrote:
However, in a perfect world, in the situation you describe above means that you should be paying use tax in Georgia. If CoolStuff began charging you Florida sales tax, would Georgia would lose out on potential use tax? I can't imagine Georgia letting that fly!
Yeah, don't care. I'm talking about common sense... not laws as they currently stand. Sales tax should be based on the location of the sale. I'm sure GA would want the income, but tough. Encourage businesses to operate in your state and it will balance out.

having lived over 1/2 my life in a state with no general sales tax that's a horrible idea... ie. having taxes based on location of the business vs. location where product is being delivered.


No no no... I only mean IF they implement such a rule.

As I said in MY OP, this should not be implemented in any form.
 
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klkitchens wrote:
deehizzle wrote:
However, in a perfect world, in the situation you describe above means that you should be paying use tax in Georgia. If CoolStuff began charging you Florida sales tax, would Georgia would lose out on potential use tax? I can't imagine Georgia letting that fly!


Yeah, don't care. I'm talking about common sense... not laws as they currently stand. Sales tax should be based on the location of the sale. I'm sure GA would want the income, but tough. Encourage businesses to operate in your state and it will balance out.


Cool story. I'm less interested in discussing a hypothetical sales tax utopia as I am in discussing potential fallout from the SCOTUS decision share by the OP.

If online businesses were charged sales tax in the location of the online business, why wouldn't I just operate my online business out of a state that does not charge sales tax?
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Bill Cook
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klkitchens wrote:
The ONLY way this makes sense (and even then it's stupid) is that if I am in GA and buy from CoolStuff (in FL), they charge me FLORIDA sales tax. The transaction is taking place IN FLORIDA (I'm sending my order through the webs to them there). Just because I'm in GA doesn't mean the sale is in GA.


The tax exists to pay for the operation of the state. You live in Georgia and should pay taxes to them, not Florida. You are being taxes based on the amount of stuff you buy.

Quote:
Doing this the reverse creates a hardship on small businesses (and large) having to file sale tax documents for all 50 states.


The hardship will be something like pushing a button in their software. I think they can handle it. Now maintaining a brick and mortar store, that's a hardship.
 
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Bill Cook
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deehizzle wrote:
If online businesses were charged sales tax in the location of the online business, why wouldn't I just operate my online business out of a state that does not charge sales tax?


Every online business would do that. Talk about unfair.
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EMBison wrote:
klkitchens wrote:
The ONLY way this makes sense (and even then it's stupid) is that if I am in GA and buy from CoolStuff (in FL), they charge me FLORIDA sales tax. The transaction is taking place IN FLORIDA (I'm sending my order through the webs to them there). Just because I'm in GA doesn't mean the sale is in GA.


The tax exists to pay for the operation of the state. You live in Georgia and should pay taxes to them, not Florida. You are being taxes based on the amount of stuff you buy.

Quote:
Doing this the reverse creates a hardship on small businesses (and large) having to file sale tax documents for all 50 states.


The hardship will be something like pushing a button in their software. I think they can handle it. Now maintaining a brick and mortar store, that's a hardship.


When I go to another state I pay for taxes in that state. When I visit another state digitally, I should pay taxes in that state as well. Common sense.

Sales tax, not purchase tax. Words have meaning. Tax is collected at the point SOLD.
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