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eBay Urges Congress to Act in Wake of Sales Tax Ruling

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eBay logoeBay called on Congress to provide clear rules and a small-business exemption after the Supreme Court ruled in South Dakota v. Wayfair. Today’s decision overruled the 1992 Quill Corp. v. North Dakota case that prevented states from requiring retailers with no physical nexus (presence) in a state to collect sales tax from its residents.

According to eBay, today’s decision states that the South Dakota law applies only to sellers who engage in a “significant quantity of business” in the state.

eBay wrote, “The Court was very clear about the importance of protecting small businesses from unfair burdens. If state tax authorities attempt to subject remote small businesses to audits and lawsuits, there will be increased litigation across the country to protect small business from unfair burdens.”

You can read more about this morning’s High Court ruling on the AuctionBytes Blog.

eBay corporate blog post follows:

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Today the Supreme Court issued its decision in South Dakota v. Wayfair, ending the long-standing black and white Quill physical presence sales tax collection standard. Ending the Quill standard allows a state to impose sales tax burdens on large retail businesses who do not have employees or facilities inside the state’s borders.

The South Dakota sales tax law that led to the end of the Quill standard targeted larger Internet retailers. Each of the three retailers in the case – Wayfair, Overstock and Newegg – sells more than $1 billion per year, and in some cases much more. The Court’s decision states that the South Dakota law “applies only to sellers who engage in a significant quantity of business in the State, and respondents are large, national companies that undoubtedly maintain an extensive virtual presence.”

As expressed in both the Supreme Court’s decision and throughout oral arguments, the operations of small businesses are different than large retailers, and state tax actions targeting them raise additional legal questions that are not addressed by this decision.

The Court was very clear about the importance of protecting small businesses from unfair burdens. If state tax authorities attempt to subject remote small businesses to audits and lawsuits, there will be increased litigation across the country to protect small business from unfair burdens.

Now is the time for Congress to step in and provide clear tax rules, with a strong small business exemption, to help small businesses take advantage of the Internet to grow and create local jobs.

SOURCE: eBay Corporate Blog Post

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Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner
Ina Steiner is co-founder and Editor of EcommerceBytes and has been reporting on ecommerce since 1999. She's a widely cited authority on marketplace selling and is author of "Turn eBay Data Into Dollars" (McGraw-Hill 2006). Her blog was featured in the book, "Blogging Heroes" (Wiley 2008). Follow her on Twitter at @ecommercebytes and send news tips to ina@ecommercebytes.com.

6 thoughts on “eBay Urges Congress to Act in Wake of Sales Tax Ruling”

  1. The sad thing is the government is always a day late and a dollar short.
    The time to enact this legislature was 10-12 years ago.
    There’s not much to grab these days boys – you blew it again.

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