Supreme Court decides police generally need a warrant to track cell phones

Supreme Court rules that internet sales can be taxed by states

State officials - including in SC, with its 6 percent sales tax - have argued they were losing out on millions - if not, in some cases, billions - of dollars in revenue a year under the Supreme Court's previous 1992 decision. Big online retailers have, in many cases, managed to avoid paying sales tax when selling goods to consumers because previously, courts said that a company must have a physical presence in the state to be taxed. But retailers with stores in the state, which do have to collect sales taxes, have long argued that the ruling put them at a competitive disadvantage with companies like Amazon. Before this ruling, Amazon, for example, collected sales tax only from customers in Washington and Pennsylvania. However, nothing will actually change until states (or the federal government) enact new regulations to force the collection of sales tax.

That means New Yorkers will have to add the tax on more than half of all Amazon purchases that are now tax-free.

Sales tax is pretty interesting in the United States as it's done on a state-by-state basis. Most brick-and-mortar retailers are familiar with "customers" who come in with their smartphones to look at goods they have no intention of buying from the local business. Last year, e-commerce retail sales alone were an estimated $453.5 billion.

"As in so many other areas, technology has evolved faster than the law and left us with at times weird, unfair results", she said. "Today, the Supreme Court applied bacon grease to the slippery slope of states taxing and regulating outside their borders", Andrew Moylan, Executive Vice President of the National Taxpayers Union Foundation and head of the organization's Interstate Commerce Initiative, said of the ruling.

Somewhere along the line, Amazon got so big that it now has what could be called a "physical presence" (in the form of fulfillment centers) in almost every state, and so it chose to start charging sales tax in every state that levied one.

The Supreme Court just voted to close a loophole that has seen American consumers dodge billions in sales tax on online orders since 1992.

In truth, this doesn't have much impact on Amazon, which has been collecting sales tax across the country since previous year.

Chief Justice John Roberts Jr., who wrote the dissenting opinion, argued that the Supreme Court left this question to Congress in 1992, and Congress has not acted. "The burden is going to higher on SMBs because of the admin work required for each state - there is /will be software to simplify this, but nonetheless the impact is going to be greater on the smaller/high growth e-commerce companies", the investor said.

"Each year, the physical presence rule becomes further removed from economic reality and results in significant revenue loss for states", Kennedy wrote for the majority.

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