by Mike Masnick
Mon, May 12th 2008 3:22pm
Following New York's decision to change its laws to force Amazon.com to collect sales tax for New York-related transactions, other states are apparently going back and reevaluating Amazon and taxes. Texas, for example, has been alerted to the fact that Amazon probably should be paying sales tax in the state. This is different than the situation in New York. The rule has always been that, if the company has a "physical presence" in the state, it is required to collect and pay sales tax. The question in New York was what counted as a physical presence. Amazon doesn't have offices or a distribution center in New York, but New York was trying to claim that all its Amazon affiliates in New York represent a physical presence. In Texas, however, Amazon actually does have a physical presence in the form of a distribution center. It's just that the state of Texas didn't recognize that until someone from a Dallas newspaper pointed it out. So even if Amazon is successful in fighting the law in New York, it looks like the renewed interest in forcing online retailers to collect and pay sales tax is catching up to Amazon in other ways.
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