Thursday, May 30th, 2013
We’ve heard from a number of retailers using Yahoo Merchant Solutions regarding the Marketplace Fairness Act, proposed legislation currently moving through Congress. If this legislation becomes law, it will affect a certain number of you — specifically those of you who sell more than $1 million in goods and services out-of-state annually.
We wanted to take an opportunity to share a brief summary of current U.S. law, as well as a summary of the proposed legislation. We want to help merchants stay on top of the latest information, as it may have an impact on their online business.
Some states impose a sales tax, some states do not. This proposed legislation would not change that. Under current law, states can require businesses with a physical presence in the state to collect sales taxes from their customers. In addition, online shoppers in 45 states are required to report the sales taxes they owe on their Internet purchases to their state tax department. The proposed legislation would change the way these taxes are collected.
If the Marketplace Fairness Act passes, U.S. states can require businesses to collect taxes for products they sell online. Businesses with out-of-state annual sales of under $1 million would not be included in these tax collection requirements. It’s important to note that some states may choose not to collect taxes on remote purchases.
The pending legislation ensures that online sellers would be limited to filing one tax return in each state. States would be required to provide software free of charge for online sellers, which calculates sales and use taxes on each transaction. The Marketplace Fairness Act passed the Senate earlier this month, but it hasn’t been reviewed by the House of Representatives. We encourage all merchants to keep an eye on how this legislation progresses through the U.S. Congress so, if the bill should pass, you’re well-informed and in a strong position to take the appropriate actions.
The Yahoo Small Business team is watching the progression of this legislation closely. And as always, we remain committed to providing powerful, easy-to-use solutions that help our customers succeed online.
The Yahoo Small Biz team