What the Marketplace Fairness Act Means For Online Shoppers - KXNet.com - Bismarck/Minot/Williston/Dickinson-KXNEWS,ND

What the Marketplace Fairness Act Means For Online Shoppers


Online Shoppers might soon be paying a sales tax, no matter what website they buy from.

The U.S. Senate has passed an "Internet Sales Tax," also known as the Marketplace Fairness Act.

Jon Berg tells you how it impacts local businesses and consumers.

<<By a vote of 69 to 27, the United States Senate passes the Marketplace Fairness Act.

Under current law, not all retailers charge a sales tax.

"So if you do go online and the sales tax is not charged, under current law a use tax is owed which is equal to the sales tax and the purchaser of those goods would have to remit that use tax to the state," Deputy Tax Commissioner Ryan Rauschenberger said.

Which some people don't do, the Marketplace Fairness Act would change that.

"It does not impose any new taxes, all it does is require the collection and remittance of those taxes by the retailer selling those goods," Rauschenberger said.

Under the current law, if you go online and purchase something from Best Buy or Target, you will be charged a sales tax because there are Best Buy and Target stores in North Dakota.

If you purchase an item from a locally owned business in another state, you won't be charged a sales tax, because that store doesn't have a local presence in North Dakota.

Under the Marketplace Fairness Act, all retailers will need to charge a sales tax.

"Instead of going in the store and kicking around the tires and finding what you want and ordering it online and not paying a sales tax it's not really going to make much different in the store, we hope they will stay there and purchase that product there and support their local businesses," Mike Rud, President of North Dakota Retail Association said.

The General Public might wonder why North Dakota needs this Internet Sales tax with a healthy economy.

"I think that's a fair discussion, but number one you don't know how long things are going to stay this way in North Dakota, so this could be a good law to get into place and two maybe it puts additional pressure on folks at the state level to reduce a different tax," Rud said.

A law which could level the playing field for both national and local retailers.>>

The Marketplace Fairness Act is not a done deal.

It still has to pass the house, which Rud says will be a tougher battle than it was getting it passed in the Senate.


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