BAM eBay Blog

Posts for eBay buyers about buying on eBay

How Do You Think a Marketplace Fairness Act Would Impact You as a Buyer?

How Do You Think a Marketplace Fairness Act Would Impact You as a Buyer?

EBay recently hosted a roundtable with sellers including the owners of eWastedirect and sunrisegolfshop. Among the items discussed with U.S. Rep Eric Swalwell were the Marketplace Fairness Act, which these sellers said would force them to "seriously curtail" their business or close them entirely.

I hadn't heard about the Marketplace Fairness Act in a while, which aims to make certain sellers, such as those making $1,000,000 gross sales, collect sales tax in all states which require a sales tax, regardless of whether the seller has a "nexus" or "physical presence" in that state or not. 

One million dollars may sound like a lot, but when you consider that is gross sales, and is before taking out a seller's costs, you could be talking about quite a few sellers who don't necessarily have a high profit margin.

Obviously online sellers will for the most part be against this, as it may bog them down in a quagmire of paperwork regarding the sales taxes, and collecting it. 

But how do you feel as a buyer having to also pay a sales tax to a place where you previously did not have to? Would that impact your purchase choice, or would you take it all in stride? 

According to this entry at the TaxJar blog, sellers would likely struggle trying to figure out which of the 10,000 sales tax destinations their customer was in.  And, suggests the blog, the seller may even decide to stop selling into certain states. Now, that this might mean for you as a buyer is you no longer have access to purchase that item online, at least from that certain seller.

The Marketplace Fairness Act certainly does seem a quagmire from my perspective. And one wonders how the large online selling sites would handle it, and whether the costs to figure that out and implement it would also ultimately get handed down to the consumer. 

How do you feel about the Marketplace Fairness Act as a buyer? Is it the idea of paying some amount more money in tax that bothers you, or the whole concept, or are you for the tax?  Post a comment here!