Internet Taxes Coming to a Mouse Near You

More States Adopting Online Sales Taxes

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As a struggling economy tightens state budgets across the country, more state capitols are taxing internet sales to lessen the pinch.

Online sales taxes are coming to more and more states, giving online customers a slightly higher bill before clicking the buy button. Virginia passed an online sales tax, and Maryland wants to one-up Virginia by taxing music purchases on sites like iTunes. California made some noise on the online sales tax front, but a public spat with Amazon.com set it on the sidelines. Indeed, the Golden State is estimated to lose out on more than $4 billion in uncollected tax revenue.

Brick and mortar shops have long advocated online sales taxes. With their online counterparts offering lower total prices, they have a distinct advantage that some label unfair.

But some see delight in the adoption of online sales taxes that other say levels the playing field for online and traditional retailers.

And state capitols probably couldn’t be happier, too. The National Conference of State Legislatures estimated that online sales taxes could bring in $23 billion for state governments.

With the stakes so high for online retailers, brick and mortar stores, and state government coffers, we can expect to see lobbying fights happening in state capitols across the country. As more and more people buy goods and services online, clever politicians – and supporting interest groups – will pass laws to make sure people pay their fair share.

Some people try avoiding paying their fair share by skipping out on state and federal income taxes, with extra taxing results in the form of interest and penalties. But working with a tax professional can help clear up your finances and manage your tax debts.

With all the extra money saved, you’ll be able to click the buy button a few more times.

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