"The ruling is absolutely hair raising for small businesses," says David Mittelstadt, a veteran tax attorney with law firm Chambliss, Bahner and Stophel based in Chattanooga, Tennessee. "The decision was a victory for large businesses over small, and I believe that if nothing is done--and states become more aggressive [in their tax policies]--you could see mom and pop retailers going out of business," he adds.
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Internet sales are treated just like sales made at retail stores, by sales representatives, over the telephone, or by mail order. If your business is located in California, retail sales of tangible personal property that you make over the Internet to California customers are generally taxable unless the sales qualify for a specific tax exemption or exclusion (see Nontaxable Sales), and you are required to register for a permit and report and pay tax to the same extent as any other retailer in California.
The current state sales tax rate on taxable items delivered into Texas is 6.25 percent. Local sales and use taxes may be due depending on where you receive orders and where the products are delivered. You should not collect more than 2 percent local tax on any one transaction. To find out the proper rate for any jurisdiction, use our tax rate search engine. More information on local sales and use taxes is available online.
In June, the High Court issued a ruling in the case of Wayfair v. South Dakota, allowing states to require online retailers to collect sales tax--even in areas where they don't have a physical presence. It has been a month since the decision, and already many small businesses are considering their options for how to address, among other things, higher tax-compliance costs in a potentially reduced-sales environment.
"One vitalizing effect of the Internet has been connecting small, even ‘micro’ businesses to potential buyers" across the U.S., Etsy CEO Josh Silverman said in a blog post on the crafts marketplace's website. "People starting a business selling their embroidered pillowcases or carved decoys can offer their wares throughout the country — but probably not if they have to figure out the tax due on every sale.”
The challenge to overturn Quill v. North Dakota was brought to the Supreme Court by South Dakota. South Dakota passed a law two years ago demanding that all retailers that, on an annual basis, have more than $100,000 in annual sales or engage in 200 or more separate transactions, pay a 4.5 percent tax on all sales, “as if the seller had a physical presence in the State.” The state government then filed suit to have the case heard by higher courts, and the Supreme Court agreed to hear the argument earlier this year.
Online marketing is the practice of leveraging web-based channels to spread a message about a company’s brand, products, or services to its potential customers. The methods and techniques used for online marketing include email, social media, display advertising, search engine optimization, and more. The objective of marketing is to reach potential customers through the channels where they spend time reading, searching, shopping, or socializing online.
However, e-commerce lacks human interaction for customers, especially who prefer face-to-face connection. Customers are also concerned with the security of online transactions and tend to remain loyal to well-known retailers.[65] In recent years, clothing retailers such as Tommy Hilfiger have started adding Virtual Fit platforms to their e-commerce sites to reduce the risk of customers buying the wrong sized clothes, although these vary greatly in their fit for purpose.[71] When the customer regret the purchase of a product, it involves returning goods and refunding process. This process is inconvenient as customers need to pack and post the goods. If the products are expensive, large or fragile, it refers to safety issues.[64]

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3.  Due Process Clause.  The provisions of M.G.L. c. 64H, § 1 are enforced subject to the limitations of the Due Process Clause of the U.S. constitution.  See Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, 504 U.S. 298 (1992).  In the instance of a vendor with a principal place of business located outside the state, due process generally requires that such vendor purposefully avail itself of the state’s economic market. See id.  The degree to which a vendor must purposefully avail itself of a state’s economic market to meet the requirements of due process can be uncertain in the instance of Internet vendors with a principal place of business located outside the state.  Therefore, 830 CMR 64H.1.7(3) sets a bright line threshold intended to reflect a level of purposeful availment at which the requirements of due process will be met in the case of such vendors.

Subjecting small business owners to burdensome taxes may bring some revenue for states, but at the high cost of stifling growth and limiting opportunity. Congress could pass a small business exception that would differentiate eight-person businesses such as Chad White’s from retail giants, allowing those smaller companies to do what they do best: serve customers, and create jobs and hopefully grow into new robust competitors.

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Beginning January 1, 2016, sellers of prepaid wireless phone cards and services are required to collect a Prepaid Mobile Telephony Services (MTS) Surcharge from customers and pay it to the BOE for all retail transactions occurring in this state. The surcharge is imposed as a percentage of the sales price of prepaid wireless cards/services sold in retail transactions occurring in this state. If you are an out-of-state retailer, your sales of prepaid wireless services and products to consumers are considered to occur in California when one of the following applies:
Big retailers like Amazon are capable of deploying enterprise software that is sophisticated enough to account for different tax rates in multiple areas where a sale takes place. But if a five-person company with an Amazon, eBay, or Etsy store front, based out of a garage in Alabama, sells to a buyer in Chicago, they must now account for a 1.25% Chicago city sales tax, a 1.75% Cook County sales tax, the 6.25% Illinois sales tax, and a 1% “special” sales tax. That’s for just one sale to one city.

The 5-4 vote overturned this ruling, citing companies like Newegg, Wayfair, and Overstock in the Supreme Court decision, stating that “each easily meets the minimum sales or transactions requirement of the Act, but none collects South Dakota sales tax.” Amazon began voluntarily collecting taxes in the 45 states that require it last year, but only on items from its own inventory, meaning sellers on Amazon Marketplace may be impacted by this ruling.
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