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US online sales tax ruling applauded by booksellers

In the US, the Supreme Court has ruled that online retailers with no physical presence in a state are required to collect tax on sales in that state, reports Publishers Weekly.

The review of the law was prompted by the state of South Dakota’s law suit against online retailers Wayfair, and Newegg for violating a 2016 law that said retailers who have $100,000 in sales or 200 separate transactions in the state are required to collect taxes.

The ruling has been applauded by the American Booksellers Association (ABA), which has previously argued that online retailers have used tax laws to gain an unfair advantage over bricks-and-mortar competitors, resulting in lost revenue to state and local governments.

‘Today’s ruling represents a tremendous victory for independent booksellers and for indie retailers throughout the country,’ said ABA CEO Oren Teicher. ‘This is a critically important milestone; and is testimony to the perseverance and persistence of so many indie booksellers and our allies who have fought this fight for more than two decades. We are delighted that the playing field has finally been leveled and it is now official government policy to treat all retailers equitably.’

Publishers Weekly notes that the ruling, in effect, ‘leaves a void’ in the way states collect sales taxes. ‘Some states, such as Washington, Pennsylvania, Colorado and the aforementioned South Dakota have laws in place governing taxation of online sales, while others will need to pass laws governing taxation of online sales … in addition, many states allow local sales taxes to be levied by city or municipality, further complicating the matter,’ reports Publishers Weekly.



Category: International news