States could now collect sales tax for purchases made online after Supreme Court decision

States could now collect sales tax for purchases made online after Supreme Court decision

(WAFB) - With an explosion of people doing more and more of their shopping online, states are starting to realize they haven't really felt the economic benefit.

Thursday's Wayfair Supreme Court decision could mean state legislatures can now force online retailers to start preparing for new rules in the sales tax world. Local tax attorneys are now weighing in to break down how this effects small businesses that sell products online, across the world.

The Supreme Court decision ruled local governments can now decide if an online retailer that sells goods into the state, that don't have a physical presence, would have to register as a dealer and collect taxes. Attorneys say any state, arguably, now has the space to make online businesses collect a tax from the buyer, then the seller must turn the money collected over to the state the product was sold in. Experts say it won't really affect big stores like Amazon because they already collect a sales tax. But it would affect the smaller business that solely have an online presence.

"You are now going to have to invest in software that is going to help you, hopefully, to be able to navigate those state's laws. It is impossible for any one business to know. There is no uniform system of taxation among the states," said Jason Brown, partner at Kean Miller, llp.

Local attorneys also suggest that small online business retailers consult with a CPA or tax lawyer because laws change and software might not keep up.

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