New York Orders Large Web Retailers To Charge Sales Tax

New York Internet shoppers, take note: in five weeks, sales tax-free shopping will end on many Web sites thanks to rewritten state rules that are trying to force Internet retailers to collect. For years, retailers with "brick and mortar" stores in New York, such as Wal-Mart, have charged sales tax on orders placed through their Web sites. Yet and other e-tailers with no physical stores have not charged the tax, much to the delight of Internet bargain hunters, like online shopper April Cantin. "Coming here, you have to pay a lot of tax, when you pay on line, you pay nothing, just shipping and handling and the item," she says.

However, in the midst of a budget crisis, New York is now telling Amazon and certain other large Internet-only vendors they must collect state and local sales tax -- if they allow sales via "click-throughs" from New York-based Web sites. The new rule is set to go into effect on June 1. The state estimates this new Internet tax will bring in $50 million this year and $75 million next year. But the new rulings aren't sitting well with the Internet giants. Amazon, the largest Internet retailer, is objecting to the decision, saying "this is the wrong time to increase taxes on New Yorkers."

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The only reason they [Amazon] is rejecting is because they don't want to loose any money. As soon as that goes into effect just about every New York resident who shops at Amazon will jump ship. That's a lot of people, and a lot of money.

They should stop buying from Amazon and start buying in Jersey or Connecticut or somewhere out of NY. No state can dictate where I should buy with my hard earned money. But NYS is notorious for going to the extreams when it comes to Money and control. Like sending inspectors over to Ikia parking lot over in Newark, NJ to ticket people coming out of the store with a purchase and getting into a car with a NY license plate... Talk about Democracy!!.

Correct me if i am wrong, but the article said this will only effect on companies "if they allow sales via "click-throughs" from New York-based Web sites". So if I click on a amazon banner or link on, I will get charged sales tax. If I go directly to, i won't?

Is a guive and take situation. NYS doesn't loose any revenue at all. New Yorkers buy in Texas and Texans buy in New York. It's a simple math. The problem is they wan it all...Greedy politicians want to make up for all the money wasted on rediculous contracts guiven to their " Famiglia". If you know what I mean!.

I'm shocked that you guys are so up in arms about this. Technically you are already supposed to be reporting these purchases on your tax returns. OF course no one probably does this, but hey take the past decade + of tax free shopping online as a blessing. At least it's lasted this long.

Taxing system sucks!. The world needs a new way of keeping the economy without screwing the working class. It is all about keeping the poor and the rich in a constant disbalance.

You can argue that the implementation of a tax somewhere is done in a biased fashion, but taxes in general aren't about ruining the poor. The government needs money to function! That's what taxes are for my good friend.

I don't know where you live, but in New York for example. Gas prices have tripple for the past year. It takes 30% of someones salary to do the weekly fillups and then again they refuse to lower or stop the fuel tax. which is the highest in the nation. Who is hurting?. Certenly not the Rich neighbor down the block.

What's the big deal?
Inside europe, if you're buying from an europe-based amazon website, you pay the taxes of your local country. If you order vista "alternate media" (64-bit dvd or the 32-bit cds), microsoft will charge you 10 euro plus local taxes in your country...

I always thought that in the US it would be similar but depending on the State

Interesting as I have purchased 3 softwares recently via the net, 1 in Germany, 1in Italy and 1 in the United States and each one charged me the v.a.t. for that country.

Germany being the greatest at 19%

Here in the US, if a I buy something online and the store does not have a store in my state (in my case Texas), then I do not have to pay a sales tax. Amazon and Newegg, for example, are outside my state with no retail stores located here. Thus, no tax. If I was to buy something online at Wal-Mart, I would have to pay tax since there are stores located in the state. When I buy online though, it isn't so much the lack of tax (which does help), but also the fact that online is usually cheaper than most retail stores. Buying a hard drive from Newegg is a no brainer when you compare to the local Best Buy retail.

I don't think anyone should have to pay taxes for buying goods on-line.

If you sell good from Jersey and they are £17.50 or less you pay zero v.a.t. that is why sell their music and videos via Jersey.

Why should retailers have to collect v.a.t. anyway.

v.a.t. should be scrapped everywhere, then we would buy more and the lousy governments of the world would
start serving the people rather than the other way around.

The government needs revenue to pay for its functions. As a result taxes on internet purchases will come someday.

I don't mind taxes on internet purchases, but I do mind the increased cost it would add to online businesses (having to track and remit taxes to 50 seperate state tax agencies in the US on the state level and even more on the local level).

But I also think the government needs to remove taxes on income and only tax on purchases.

The government wanting more money, what a surprise! :eek:
I think it's just a matter of time before all internet sites (or most of it) start charging tax. Maybe not in the next few years, but one day I think there will be a tax on the majority of things.

Why would the governemt deserve to make money on internet purchasing?.. they are in no way involved in it and there is no investment in it to 'claw back'.. cynical grasp for the honey pot.

this shouldn't be no surprise...not only was the retailer making a killing by not having to collect taxes...but also made a fortune on 'overpriced' shipping charges.....if they would have charged 'actual normal' shipping charges and added 3-5% for the state taxes..then they would have been better off...but retailer greed is the culprit..not the government.

(jwjw1 said @ #6)
this shouldn't be no surprise...not only was the retailer making a killing by not having to collect taxes...but also made a fortune on 'overpriced' shipping charges.....if they would have charged 'actual normal' shipping charges and added 3-5% for the state taxes..then they would have been better off...but retailer greed is the culprit..not the government.

Most stuff from Amazon and ship free

Have you ever purchased anything from Amazon? lol

I've bought more from than I have from any consumer store in the past 5 years. It's cheaper. Heck, if I'd have bought my MBP at a store where I live it would have cost me well over $2200. I bought it from for less, with a rebate. We have 10% sales tax, it's a rip off.

(JamesWeb said @ #5)
Wow, people don't like paying taxes, there's a surprise.

hold on. hold on.
I pay taxes for school, roads, defenses, medical, food stamp but cut them off after certain month and get them job.
but not for some politician sit on his fat ass and collect money from corp and taxes.
waste money on bullsh!t wars.

I don't mine paying taxes(not arm and leg "pay checks") but I hate it when goes to ****. I hate paying retail taxes they suck ass.

The three common types are income tax, property tax and sales tax. Between them I think income tax and sales tax are more fair than property tax. I live in Texas and 70% of our state is funded by property tax (we have no income tax). What sucks is that if you lose your job or get a pay cut you are still paying just as much taxes until you downsize your house. With sales tax you would pay less because you would be spending less without a job.

More taxes to stop consumers from buying. Don't they realize that *lower* taxes gives consumers more money to spend and put back into the economy? (Yes that question is rhetorical)

To me it's about fairness. I don't enjoy paying taxes anymore than the next guy and I do agree that lower taxes encourage consumer spending. But, how is it fair that one company gets what amounts to a government subsidization (being able to operate tax-free) when another company doing the same thing is required to charge tax just because they choose to have a physical store front?

I think online orders should have the same tax as if you bought the item at a store. If sales tax needs to be reduced then it should be across the board.

(sphbecker said @ #4.1)
To me it's about fairness.
I think online orders should have the same tax as if you bought the item at a store.

And it is fair that a company that isn't in NY and doesn't receive any benefit from NY should pay taxes there? Brick and Mortar stores are tax payers, but also tax beneficiaries - the sales tax that is collected help to fund the benefits they receive through the infrastructure, parking lots, roads, electric, water, police force, fire protection, etc... from that state where they reside.

Why should a company that doesn't benefit from those services have to pay taxes there? What did the state of NY do to earn those taxes? NOTHING! Is that FAIR?

It also violates a very basic principle that this country is founded on - remember that little tea party a while back?
No taxation without representation!

It won't bring in "millions". THAT is a lie.
If everyone who visited these sites in the past, STILL bought from those same sites, then yes it would bring
in the "millions", but, you can bet some will shop elsewhere, which in the end will decrease the money
coming in. Dumba** politicians.

Exactly, people living in New York will just shop online from out of state sites now. They're going to be losing money now, morons.