Proposed Internet Sales Tax Change in Florida

Posted on January 19, 2012. Filed under: Uncategorized |

Many companies selling goods on the internet currently enjoy the exclusion of collecting and remitting sales taxes giving them a competitive price advantage over local retailers on the same products.  But it appears that’s all about to change!

Current Florida Tax Law

Currently, only companies with a physical presence — a store or warehouse for example — in Florida must pay the state’s 6 percent sales tax.

Proposed Changes to Florida Tax Law

The push to collect taxes from Internet retailers started nearly 10 years ago, but have died in the legislature.  But that sentiment is about to change as states across the country are looking to boost tax revenues by going after retail giants like Amazon and others. After New York passed an online sales tax law in 2008, at least 8 other states have followed suit, including 5 in the past year. This month, Indiana signed a deal with Amazon in which the retailer will begin collecting sales tax in 2014. Accordingly to an estimate by the National Conference on State Legislatures, Florida is projected to lose more than $1.4 billion in revenue in 2012 alone. State legislatures are also pushing for an e-tax bill in Congress, where there are at least 3 pending e-bills.

Sales Tax Projections

No one’s really sure where this is going to go, but given the current need for more tax revenues and the financial success demonstrated by others, it may be quite likely that the tax holiday we’ve experienced is about to change. Certainly, one can project that given the increased pricing to the end consumer and the loss of the current competitive advantage, internet sales companies can anticipate a decrease in sales and ultimately profits.

More information on state and local taxes can be found at  Special thanks extended to Toluse Olurunnipa, Miami Herald for “Tallahassee battle lines drawn over Internet sales tax”, January 16, 2012.

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