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March 20th, 2009, 02:27 PM #1
AB 178 is NOT "modeled on" the New York law
- Join Date
- January 18th, 2005
When we first started discussing AB 178 (the "Amazon tax" bill in the California Assembly), we all recognized that it was inspired by the New York law.
However, I now think that it is critically important to point out that AB 178 (as drafted) is much, much broader than the New York law. I expect that it will be amended to conform more closely with the New York law, but right now it is not modeled on the New York law, it is merely "inspired by" the New York law.
Another important several commentators have noted that Amazon's lawsuit in New York was dismissed by the New York Supreme Court, as if that is the final decision. In fact, in New York, the "Supreme Court" is what the regular trial courts are called -- it is not an appellate court, and I certainly assume that Amazon is appealing the ruling.
This is critically important because some folks seem to believe that the New York law has already been considered and "approved" by New York appellate courts, which has not happened. In addition, it's critically important to note that the law which the New York trial court upheld is very, very different from the law now proposed in California.
If legislators believe that (1) this bill is the same as New York's, and (2) the New York law has already been upheld by NY appellate courts, then they are much less likely to consider amending it.
In addition, if other folks believe that the California law merely "mirrors" the New York law, they may be shocked to later discover that it is much broader, and would effectively force all merchants (selling more than $10,000 in products to Californians) to collect sales tax.
March 20th, 2009, 03:38 PM #2
- Join Date
- January 18th, 2005
Oops. I was 100% wrong. The California bill appears identical to the New York law. I don't know what I was referring to earlier which I thought was the New York law; perhaps it was the regulations promulgated after the New York law was passed, or maybe I had copied it from somewhere else. (I just now grabbed the actual text from Amazon's legal complaint filed in New York; I'm still not able to determine whether Amazon appealled.)
The appellate issue, of course, is unchanged: this law has NOT been reviewed by any appellate court.
If a moderator could DELETE this thread, I'd appreciate it. Thanks, and sorry.
March 20th, 2009, 03:38 PM #3
The reason I don't have a law degree is because I couldn't bear to have my nose in law books for 4 years even though I wanted to be a lawyer but to have to analyze things to this degree would cause my brain to explode daily. I so appreciate your POV and legal clarity. Bless you for having a legal mind and a valid law degree, Mark. And thank you for the legal clarifications on all this crazy going on in our industry.Peace,
Loving Everyone's Child Creates Magic
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