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Sun Mar 10 2019 11:36:55

Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales Tax for PA

By: Reader

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Dear Ina,
I don't know whether anyone has reported this issue to you yet, but there is an eBay site issue that I reported this morning with regard to the proper collection of sales tax.

I reside in Pennsylvania, so I am required to collect PA sales tax on all sales from customers who also reside in PA. I made a rather substantial sale this morning to a Pennsylvania customer, only to find that the PA sales tax had not been charged on the sale. 

I was confounded by this error, as my preferences for collecting sales tax have not changed in years. Consequently, I went into the listing and found that the "charge sales tax" box was unchecked in the listing. This box was checked at the time the listing was created on Inkfrog, and as I said earlier, my eBay preferences are set to collect PA sales tax. 

A quick review of several of my other listings revealed the problem to be prevalent across all of my listings, except for those created more than a year ago. Thinking perhaps there could have been a problem with Inkfrog, I checked several listings that I created recently directly on eBay and found the same problem. 

I called eBay and was told this is a known issue, but they seem to believe only a few sellers are affected. I am more inclined to believe only a handful of us have noticed to date. 

I was able to do a bulk edit of my listings to correct the problem, however I have no idea how long this has been going on, or if the sales tax return I filed recently is accurate! If you haven't already done so, you may want to give your readers a heads up on this issue.
Thank you,
D.

Note from the editor: FYI, eBay will collect sales tax on purchases by Pennsylvania residents, but not until July. Until then, eBay advises sellers that, "Prior to the effective date, you should continue to collect and remit tax in these states if required." Here's the eBay help page on sales tax, let us know if you're also experiencing issues.



Comments (14) | Permalink

Readers Comments

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: angryllama This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 10 16:07:08 2019

Ummmm... I think everybody is missing the REAL POINT here.  This seller was dotting the I's and Crossing the T's.  EBAY has fallen down on this by NOT CHARGING and NOT COLLECTING the Pennsylvania Sales Tax that the SELLER had already set his / her listings to Charge and Collect.
Ebay WAITING until some future date is Wrong Wrong Wrong on every level.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: Marie

Sun Mar 10 16:08:57 2019

I don't think anyone is missing the point.  Least of all the author.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Sun Mar 10 16:40:23 2019

The problem once again is Ebay saying this is a known issue but once again not having it fixed.  This is happening more and more often on Ebay and all they ever say is this is a known issue but never announce that things are fixed.  Ebay needs to STOP playing around with their codes or do what they PROMISED and test them before making changes.  But once again Ebay does not keep their promises and just throws untested code changes out on the live data and then  when its found to have issues, say this is a known issue.

The fact that its a known issue that once again Ebay does not announce to its Sellers because they do not want their stock price to fall, is leaving their sellers at risk for owing large sums of money in Tax.  If this is a known issue Ebay needs to start issuing announcements of the issues so Sellers can take the necessary steps to protect themselves instead of only worrying about what the Shareholders are going to think.  Wenig needs to just step down and let somebody competent step up and run the company as he is only concerned about his year end bonus, not the ability of the marketplace to survive.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

This user has validated their user name. by: cfrphoto

Mon Mar 11 00:33:51 2019

I don't know which is worse - bungling collection or sales tax sellers are required to collect or failing to report sales tax collected on behalf of sellers. It is not possible to accurately report B&O tax in Washington without reporting marketplace facilitator sales tax collection on behalf of the seller. If eBay rolls off orders after 60 days, how can a seller complete a quarterly or annual tax return? Did eBay launch into tax collection without being mindful of seller tax reporting requirements?

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 00:41:23 2019

@CFRPhoto

Does Ebay ever launch anything that has been well thought out?  Even this GTC MANDATE wasn't well thought out in the least yet they throw it on us and say okay do as we say because we know exactly what we are talking about.  Two days later they have to issue corrections to their comments and re-think Sellers being billed twice in a month because they thought it out so well.

When Ebay gets hit by those State Sales Tax Auditors they are really going to regret not listening to anybody about the pitfalls and the fact you cannot do it as sloppy as all their other programs are run.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 01:12:37 2019

I keep a record of all items that sell with a California address. Whether Ebay charged sales tax or not does not mater. According to the State,  I owe sales tax for that sale. I would never leave that information up to someone else or a program. Today's glitches are on a daily basis, and it matters not the site or the venue. When you consider all the computer code that is needed to run a site these days, it is a miracle we don't see a lot more damage.    

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 01:25:44 2019

Returns are part of the online selling business. They go with the territory.  Best you add whatever amount you think you are going to need to cover Returns in your business to each item you sell, so that when you get hit with a return, your loss  is covered. Block the buyer and move on is my policy.  

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Tiffee Jasso This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 01:27:23 2019

Sorry my Return post should have posted to the one on returns and not this one.  

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Paul W This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 02:41:09 2019

eBay is still collecting the wrong sales tax in Washington, which has many, many different local tax rates.  And if a buyer is overcharged, getting a refund from Washington DOR is like trying to figure out the relationship between you and the daughter of an uncle of your second cousin twice removed.  Good luck with both of those!

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 03:12:28 2019

Any one know if they are charging you a FVF based on SALES TAX (Ahich I believe is illegal, but this IS FeeBay, soooo----)  on top of the "fee" for shipping?  

Any one know how to get a MOBILE PHONE read on your sales and fees???  I believe I have been overcharged, but cannot find how to get the info, my "reports" only have a lump sum paid to ebay via my PP acct,  and PP is no better.  

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Silver Ice King This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 03:26:12 2019

@Tiffee Jasso

I also live in CA and print all my invoices every day which I log into a spreadsheet for both income tax purposes as well as Sales Tax purposes.  I sell on multiple sites so this comes in extremely helpful especially since time and time again when I run the Sales reports they are missing some information or invoices.  Beginning in April, it appears that Ebay is going to be responsible for collecting the Sales Tax for CA according to the recent law that was passed and if they have more than $200K of sales in any district they are also responsible for collecting the Sales Tax for that district, which Ebay does NOT have the ability to do.  Does this mean that Ebay is going to just charge the highest amount of Sales Tax for the state on all Sales or are they going to leave Sellers potentially liable once again for having to pay the difference because of their ineptitude in programming.  

I understand that programming is difficult and requires a lot of work to make these changes, but Ebay is the one that decided to be in this business and as such needs to spend whatever it takes to get it right, but of course Wenig does not want to spend the money on the talent necessary to do it right.  Instead he penny pinches on things that are critical to Ebay all so he can have a larger year end bonus due to it appearing he was doing a good job.  Unfortunately his penny pinching ways have caught up with not only Ebay but is now also effecting all Sellers as Ebay can no longer attract sufficient buyers to justify its listings, let alone to pay for the talent necessary to fix the fiasco called Seller Hub and the related catalog which it appears that Ebay has finally realized is a flop and stopped wasting their money on it, at least I hope they have.

When the CA Sales Tax auditors come in and begin their audit of Ebay they are going to find a company that is used to playing everything loosey goosey and will have a field day racking up the errors and probably underpayment of Sales Tax to CA as I am sure Ebay will attempt to keep any overcharged Sales Tax as additional revenue growth rather than submitting it to the State as required.  Wenig is going to find out just how his lack of knowledge and refusal to pay for top talent in their specialty fields will come back to haunt Ebay.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: cvsharkey This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 07:04:37 2019

The issues above, I believe, may be or become prevalent across the board, as other ecommerce marketplaces begin collecting taxes. I'm in the midst of seeing Etsy & now Paypal climbing on board and it is of concern. My only consolation being that I make few sales within the state I live in. It is very difficult to check as to whether I am given back those state taxes so I can make payment myself. This issue needs to be resolved across all states that have sales taxes. This situation is ridiculous. Do I trust eBay, Etsy, PayPal or any other vendor to make payment of those taxes collected? And not notify me as to what amount has been paid and to whom so that I have a record of them having made payment? No.

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: comet This user has validated their user name.

Mon Mar 11 13:55:51 2019

I also have to ask---  as a very casual seller,  due to ebays intransigence my sales fell to near zero,  and I am NOT giving away items--- am I even liable for sales tax,  selling perhaps a few hundred $$ a year,  little of that in NY???  I don't have a business,  or a tax collector status,  or a Resale Cert.  So how do you find out if you really "owe" whst might amount to literally a dollar or two a year in any state,  muchless New York????  Does ebay address this???  Surely not as.far as I can tell!!!

Perminate Link for Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales   Seller Reports eBay Is Incorrectly Handling Sales

by: Moonwishes This user has validated their user name.
Web Site

Mon Mar 11 23:31:16 2019

I don't sell on eBay but I do on Amazon and am from PA. One of the reasons that I never signed up for Amazon to collect sales tax is my niche it can get complicated. If I can't get people to charge it correctly here in PA how can I expect them to do it right in Seattle? So I got my first order from PA after Amazon was required to collect sales tax, and as far as I was concerned they got it wrong. They charged sales tax on a regular skirt pattern or something. I emailed them and they tell me that only DRESS patterns are exempt from tax. No, they didn't look at the beginning of that section of the tax code. Patterns for clothes that would not be taxable also aren't taxable but something like a Halloween costume is.  I have no way of refunding a customer their sales tax that they were charged.  At least on eCRATER, I can set up by category what gets charged and what doesn't. But on Amazon no way as they don't want to be told they are doing something wrong nor will they correct it nor will anyone take the time to investigate it.

Whether eBay or Amazon or any other venues that are doing the tax collecting themselves, they are going to be making all sorts of errors. The states will be happy to get extra taxes or if they find out that things weren't being charged enough, will be unhappy and will take it out most likely on the poor seller.



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