Supreme Court to hear case focused on online sales tax

Supreme Court to hear case focused on online sales tax

Supreme Court to hear case focused on online sales tax

Mark Bartholomew, a professor of law at the University at Buffalo, said New York's laws are stringent when it comes to online sellers and sales tax (They could have been more stringent: Gov. Cuomo proposed the Internet Fairness Conformity Tax in the 2019 state budget, but lawmakers didn't include it in the final document).

Overall there are 20 states where at least one third of their revenue is derived from sales taxes, said the report, highlighting how the expected June ruling will have bigger stakes in some states than others.

In 1967, the Supreme Court ruled that states could not force mail-order catalog companies to collect sales taxes unless a buyer lived in a state where the company had a physical presence - a retail store, a headquarters or a distribution center, for example.

The justices will decide whether to overturn 50 years' worth of rulings that forbid states from imposing sales taxes on whatever their residents buy from out-of-state retailers. The state enacted the measure with the explicit goal of overturning the 1992 Supreme Court ruling, known as Quill v.

Q: Why is the Supreme Court taking up this issue now? North Dakota that upheld earlier rulings limiting states and localities to collecting sales taxes from only those retailers with a physical presence in their jurisdictions.

In a court filing supporting South Dakota, more than 40 states said the retroactivity concern is overblown. A total of 35 other states have weighed in on South Dakota's side. However, this is not guaranteed.

It is also possible that Congress could finally take action. The state is urging the court to let sales taxes be imposed on companies with an "economic presence" in a state - a test South Dakota says its law would pass.

Still, the Supreme Court's decision could have major implications here.

The companies also note that the largest internet retailer,, now pays sales taxes in all the 45 states that collect them. "Freed of Commerce Clause restraint on their taxing authority, states will oppose any congressionally-mandated restrictions on their cross-border taxing power".

The court showdown instead involves Wayfair, Overstock and Newegg, three retailers sued by South Dakota for not charging taxes to consumers there. But states say software has now made collecting sales tax easy. But states have found that few people comply.

Q: What is the case for businesses that don't now collect sales taxes nationwide?

Online retailers that want to face the future with confidence - and ensure their ability to focus on satisfying the needs of customers - should immediately develop a reliable strategy for tracking evolving sales tax regulations, assessing their impact on their businesses, and automating sales tax compliance.

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