The decision came on a South Dakota suit against Wayfair.com, with the state claiming the company should collect sales taxes on sales in the state. That decision established that online retailers only had to collect the state sales tax in states where they had a physical presence.
The case before the Supreme Court, South Dakota v. Wayfair, stemmed from a law South Dakota passed requiring online retailers to collect and remit sales tax even if they don't have a physical presence in the state.
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South Dakota's law, enacted in 2016, focused on larger out-of-state e-commerce companies, requiring them to collect sales tax if they amass $100,000 in sales or 200 separate transactions.
"The decision is good for MA and good for states across the country both because it could help to level the playing field between in-state retailers and online retailers and because it will provide revenue for important services in the state, like education and local aid", Berger said.
"At this time, the Department is reviewing the ruling and its impact on Florida sales tax", a Revenue spokeswoman said.
Brick-and-mortar retailers cheered the decision.
The Retail Industry Leaders Association, another trade group, said the ruling allows retailers to compete "without government's thumb on the scale" and called it "a win for all those who believe in free markets".
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"Amazon's third-party business should be minimally affected in the long term from states imposing taxes on online sales, as the impact is equal across the e-commerce ecosystem." said Jitendra Waral, an analyst at Bloomberg Intelligence.
States may require online retailers to collect sales taxes, the Supreme Court ruled Thursday.
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Later, he concluded, "Concerns that complex state tax systems could be a burden on small business are answered in part by noting that, as discussed below, there are various plans already in place to simplify collection; and since in-state businesses pay the taxes as well, the risk of discrimination against out-of-state sellers is avoided". For example, the popular electronics seller B&H only charges sales tax in NY and New Jersey, where it has a physical presence.
In the majority decision, Justice Anthony Kennedy noted that the realities of consumer habits have changed drastically since the 1992 decision. "Big victory for fairness and for our country".
The Trump administration backed South Dakota in the case, arguing that no one could have foreseen how rapidly e-commerce would expand. The ruling explicitly exempts smaller businesses along with all but the most successful of individual sellers using, say, eBay or other online sales channels.
Big chains have been collecting sales tax nationwide because they typically have physical stores in whatever state a purchase is being shipped to.