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Misleadingly Labeled “Internet Tax” Bill Will Have Horrific Consequences For Investors, Public and Business

 Michael R. Fuljenz (2)The so-called Internet Tax Bill is “outrageously unfair and un-American,” and could increase costs for investors, be devastating for small businesses and force the public to pay retroactive taxes on purchases they made years ago. 

The Marketplace Fairness Act of 2013 (HR 684), the so-called online sales tax legislation now pending in the U.S. House of Representatives, is “outrageously unfair and un-American,” will have financially devastating consequences for American businesses and investors, and potentially result in citizens being forced to pay retroactive sales taxes on purchases they made years ago, stated Michael Fuljenz.

“There are potentially horrific consequences of this misleadingly labeled tax law.  Anyone who bought any item from out of state could be hit with tax bills for purchases made years before the passage of the law.  Businesses could face the burdensome expenses and time of massive record keeping and being simultaneously audited by dozens of revenue-hungry states and even Indian tribes,” said Fuljenz.

Fuljenz’s concerns with the impact this bill may have, come after meetings in recent weeks to discuss the unintended consequences of the so-called Internet tax bill with U.S. House Speaker John Boehner; former Louisiana Congressman Jimmy Hayes; former United States Mint Director Philip N. Diehl and others.  He also explained his concerns about the legislation during a recent meeting of the Board of Directors of the Industry Council for Tangible Assets (ICTAonline.org), a national trade association for the rare coin, currency and precious metals industry.

“As a small business owner, I may now be severely limited in doing business in some states because I could be swamped by paperwork, be subjected to hundreds of taxing authorities’ demands for records, audits and other demands.  The time, expertise or legal ability to respond or defend against these issues would be prohibitive for me and other small, lower-margin businesses.”

Fuljenz points out that nearly every news story about the legislation incorrectly refers to it as an Internet tax bill.

“The word, ‘Internet,’ does not even appear in the bill.  The legislation approved by the Senate and now before the House actually authorizes taxes on every kind of interstate sales; by mail, phone, radio, television, Internet and any other method imaginable,” explained Fuljenz.

“Because this legislation could even cover services, investors might be hit with taxes when they acquire or sell stocks, and even be taxed on their contributions to 401K plans.  The states supporting this terrible legislation seem to believe they are entitled to have me and virtually all other businesses in the U.S. do their work as sales and use tax collectors without us benefiting from services or representation in their states.  That is outrageously unfair and un-American especially since foreign sellers, such as those in Canada and China, don’t have to comply.”

Known as America’s Gold Expert®, Fuljenz warned that buyers of gold, silver and other precious metals and bullion coins could suddenly face an additional five to ten percent increase in costs on many purchases they make because of sales taxes. “Many people have precious metals which are eligible for inclusion in their individual retirement accounts, but now future purchases could be subject to sales taxes.  That means the initial costs for those investments could be significantly higher,” he stated.

“We can’t be competitive in many states if we have to charge more money.  People won’t pay an eight percent tax for an item on which we have only a one or two percent markup, such as gold and silver bullion coins.”

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DCM

I recognize that there may be issues with this bill and adding complexity. I dislike that government has to create and extend laws such as this. At the same time the law in many cases seems redundant to laws, at the state level, already in effect. The problem I believe is that as a country we have become comfortable with breaking the law is ways “that don’t hurt anybody” and although if I live in a state that collects sales tax, and I realize that I can “avoid” paying the tax as part of a sale when I by something on the internet, there are many of us who forget that we are still liable for those taxes. We complain that other taxes (Gas, services, income) are being raised in the states but at the same time we are STEALING from the states by not paying what is due. Is… Read more »

Barbara

You are miss-informed. Amazon will not pay any taxes either way; they will simply collect the tax from purchasers (you and I) and pass it on to the Government. They have the computer systems in place to handle this effortlessly. We need not worry about them. The problem is the burden on small business to comply with the tax laws of all 50 states. The problem is the difference in tax rules in every little burg which makes compliance for small businesses impossible. Small business is already being squeezed with unreasonable laws from the EPA, the INS, the Department of Labor, the Department of Commerce, Unemployment, the Affordable Care Act, and OSHA. Is it no wonder that brick and mortar businesses are disappearing? Some are finding salvation via the internet. By all means, let’s destroy that too. Small business is only the backbone of this country, but by all means… Read more »

Norman Senstad

The only tax discussion our federal government should be entertaining at this time is to establish a fair tax or a consumption tax of some kind and abolishing the IRS. As a side note Obama care should also be abolished.

Our governments be they state or nation need not search for extra revenues to spend but instead be searching for ways to conserve. The last thing we need is another tax and the complications and misery that would bring.

DrJCA1

Most of you simply look at the dollars involved. The real disaster is the blight that must occur when big box retailers, and now the internet, destroy our once wonderful towns and communities. What kind of a neighborhood do you think your grandkids will have when 90% of the real stores are shuttered and the criminal element takes over? Are you techie fools so deluded as to think that birthday or holiday shopping will be the same excitement when you and the kids sit down in front of some computer screen, as opposed to spending the day out with them, touching, tasting, smelling, and playing with all the goodies that once were in the real stores? You all jump on this tech bandwagon without a thought as to what’s it’s doing to our way of life. The stores on the internet couln’t give a darn if you live of die.… Read more »

flight93

I live in a rural area and it’s a 2 hour drive to the nearest city where you can purchase certain items such as electronics,books,sporting goods and a host of other things that are used in everyday life.With the cost of gas and state sales taxes at 9.5% or above,I buy over the internet as often as I can.This does not hurt local merchants as they don’t stock the things we need and the few items that they do stock are usually 50% to 200% above what they should cost.I Have no problem paying sales tax on items I buy over the internet as long as the state government cuts wasteful spending so that they can reduce the sales tax rate.This is just greedy politicians trying to get more money to waste.

Charles Dahl

Sales Tax not on internet sales does not hurt the local merchant as much as they say. Its the local merchant does not offer good service. the convenice of the internet is the local merchants biggest problem. Taxes is just Goverment greed.

Glenn Shannon

It would have made sense if there was a tax put on the internet sales that say an 8 percent tax for all states no matter what the sales tax was in any state. That probably would be too simple for the government to understand but to me would make sense. It was just a matter of time before people were forced to pay internet taxes as the states have maxed their taxes on everything alive or dead so what was left, the internet.

Carolyn Vick

Honey, ain’t no way in hell I am going back into the past to pay taxes on items purchased a while ago. They can just take my straight to jail.

USNavyChiefRet

I have been making purchases on the internet because in my state the increased the sales tax to pay for a new stadium so the pro baseball team had a brand new stadium to play in. I’m not going to support these multi-millionaire players and their multi-billionaire owners just so they can have a new stadium to play in. In fact, the county commissioner went ahead and pushed the increased sales tax through himself, with no public input on the issue, because he was afraid it would be rejected if put to a public vote. That’s what is referred to as “taxation without representation”. Seems to me this happened before in America, oh yeah, that’s right. The result was known as the “Boston Tea Party”. This is bad legislation. Our economy is in bad enough shape, so now the politicians are trying to make it worse. If local companies want… Read more »

Sam McGinty

I hope we can prevent the levy of an Internet sales tax. Even though there are little or no taxes on entitlements, the Administration’s constituents still pay sales tax.

Sojourner Truth

I’m mystified by those who would support this kind of constant search of the government to take more money from people who are working hard just to make ends meet. The government taxes every purchase, the use of energy, the ability to run a business, income, communications, utilities, our real estate, our family inheritance, illusionary carbon footprints, construction, vehicles, even the air, and I’m sure that the sun and the moon aren’t far behind. The sad fact is that people are still going to insist on more from government even as we shoot ourselves in the feet to get it. “If the foundations are destroyed, what can the righteous do?” (Psalm 10:3)

Steve T.

When I travel to any other state and buy something I have to pay the sales tax of that state. If I have an on-line business, all purchasers should have to pay the sales tax for the state my business is located in. I should not have to collect taxes for other states. If a sale is made by a large business with warehouses in different states, tax these purchases by where the items are shipped from. The states collect their taxes, brick and mortar stores have an even playing floor and small businesses can survive without being buried by red tape. why do they have to complicate things?

TomV

Paying taxes on out of state purchases may be a hard pill to swallow, but the way it’s working now is grossly unfair to merchants, and is driving some of them out of business.

PaulE

Yet another poorly designed law that will end up having many unintended consequences, that the public will ultimately pay for over and over again.

Chris Kocur

Technically the purchaser already owes the taxes anyway, its just that the States have no convenient or cost effective way to enforce collection as they have no jurisdiction over the seller and there are far too many purchasers to go after them individually. As for the business not getting State services, just charge those costs back to the customer — who *is* getting those State services — just like local businesses who are having to compete with you do. As to craigslist, if the sale is local its already supposed to be taxed, it doesn’t matter if the contact originated on the internet or not. Yes, even sales through newspapers and garage sales are technically supposed to be taxed (the purchaser owes the tax since the seller doesn’t have a permit to collect it), its just that again the State has no convenient way of enforcing it. While this particular… Read more »

donald sapp

this is stupid i will contact my congressman

Ralph Camp

If this becomes law, the statement made in the article about the different types of sales affected, specifically the one about “any other method imaginable”, could have really adverse impacts on everyday life. Imagine advertising on Craigslist for your garage sale or any item/service you put on there and the Feds and/or the state show up at your door and demand their fair share. Most people will sooner throw stuff away rather than pay another tax on it. Everyone should contact their reps in the house and voice their concerns about this.

Ralph Camp