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Taxation for E-Commerce
19296 cr points
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24 / M / Chicago
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Posted 4/3/13
In the present, few states take tax from sales over the Internet. But theoretically, since the transportation of those goods in the real world still occupies public road and airspace, they should be taxed, albeit perhaps not to the same level as brick-and-mortar stores. What are your opinions on this?

Of course, Amazon ain't making profits even when dominating the E-commerce market. Adding taxes will kick it into the red.
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24 / M / your mind
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Posted 4/3/13
I expect this thread, despite posing a highly relevant and well thought out question, will not survive here on CR. I'm afraid this is the wrong audience for such a discussion. I applaud your attempt to create an intelligent thread though.
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Posted 4/3/13
So who gets the income from these taxes? The state where the seller is or the state where the buyer lives? And what about the states in between whose roads are being used to transport the goods? And what about the 5 states that don't even have a sales tax? My state began charging sales tax on Amazon purchases last September. Using the rationale that they have a physical presence in our state. So in essence Amazon has created jobs in my state and are now being penalized for it.

Ronald Reagan quote for thought : "You can’t tax business. Business doesn’t pay taxes. It collects taxes."
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24 / M / Chicago
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Posted 4/4/13
The theoretical ideal is for the states and the federal government to share the taxes in accordance to the amount of responsibilities they may have, namely increasing the efficiency of the country's infrastructure. The other way to improve infrastructure is by public-private ventures that repay itself by tolling. Unfortunately, the public has a negative perception of such. So congestion continues.

The Ronald Reagan quote is base on the simple assumption that businesses could pass on the taxes with price rises. This is possible in markets where demand is relatively inelastic. But in competitive markets, consumers can as well just put their money in mattresses or consume substitutes instead.
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19 / M / NJ
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Posted 4/6/13
The E-market should have taxes, but you can count that the masses will not take this with open arms.
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M & F / New Ameri...
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Posted 4/7/13
I'm thinking of suing the state that I live in. Every year when I file my state income tax returns there's a section that requires you to enter the amount of goods you purchased online and did not have to pay state sales tax at the time of purchase. So basically there's no difference in me being charged state sales tax at the time of purchase and paying for it with a reported lump sum at the end of the year. Of course I could just lie and not report anything, but I didn't lie, I reported it. But am I wrongly being charged for something I don't have to pay for? If sales tax is currently exempt by law for online and out of state purchases, then the state I am living is is breaking the law by requiring me to report that amount and adding it to my tax liability. I think it's also a violation of privacy issue. What if I was buying things that I don't care anyone to know about? I have every right to do that. The state is effectively discouraging me from buying things that are legal but not likely to find in my own state. The law needs to be clear that we either pay state taxes for e-commerce products or we don't.
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25 / M / Wisconsin
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Posted 4/15/13
If an online store has a presence in a state they will have to collect taxes from those state citizens. Amazon, as an example, has a presence in Washington state. If a citizen from Washington state purchases something, the retailer has to collect tax from that citizen for that state. Another example, If there was a company in Illinois that sold items on the internet and I purchased those items but the company doesn't have a presence in Wisconsin (which I am a citizen) that company doesn't have to collect taxes. But I, a Wisconsin Citizen, have to pay sales tax on the honor system.
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25 / M / Wisconsin
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Posted 4/15/13

JustineKo2 wrote:

I'm thinking of suing the state that I live in. Every year when I file my state income tax returns there's a section that requires you to enter the amount of goods you purchased online and did not have to pay state sales tax at the time of purchase. So basically there's no difference in me being charged state sales tax at the time of purchase and paying for it with a reported lump sum at the end of the year. Of course I could just lie and not report anything, but I didn't lie, I reported it. But am I wrongly being charged for something I don't have to pay for? If sales tax is currently exempt by law for online and out of state purchases, then the state I am living is is breaking the law by requiring me to report that amount and adding it to my tax liability. I think it's also a violation of privacy issue. What if I was buying things that I don't care anyone to know about? I have every right to do that. The state is effectively discouraging me from buying things that are legal but not likely to find in my own state. The law needs to be clear that we either pay state taxes for e-commerce products or we don't.


You only have to claim items that aren't taxed, when you purchased online. If you don't pay a tax for online purchase you can get a fine. I heard of a story of a lady who purchased tobacco products online for cheap, well the reason it was cheap was because she didn't have to pay state taxes. The state audited her and found that she didn't pay those taxes for those items. She was fined a couple thousand dollars! so pay your taxes.

Sailor Candy Moderator
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Posted 10/25/13
Closed due inactivity. 0 new posts in months. Locked.
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