The Marketplace Fairness Act
In the 21st Century, shopping is not just going to brick-and-mortar stores as more and more consumers are turning to online shopping. There are many reasons why consumers shop online. For instance, it is really convenient to shop online since people do not need to go out of their houses; they can simply just sit on the couch and browse on the internet and the package will be in the consumers’ hands within a matter of days. Consumers have also found that in order to purchase products that are not available in their local area they must shop on the internet. For instance, a collector of fine literature is not confined to traveling great distances and spending hours in search of that “rare” find, but can at his leisure shop with numerous online sellers. Also, some companies do not have brick-and-mortar stores in many of the states where consumers live, so, consumers can just get on the Internet and they can have access to the products that they need, which is another reason why people shop online. However, the biggest advantage to online shopping is that consumers have found out that shopping online can usually lead them to cheaper prices than at the brick-and-mortar stores. And of course, they do not have to pay sales taxes if they shop online.
Because of the rapid growth of online shopping, the U.S government started to notice that there is a huge amount of uncollected taxes that should be coming into the coffer from online sales because there is no such law to regulate or address this issue yet. Quill Corp. v. North Dakota regulated the retailers need to collect sales and use taxes for States where they have physical stores (“Congressional Digest”, 2013). More and more brick-and-mortar store owners have started to complain that online shopping has affected their bottom lines because online sellers are not compelled to collect and pay state and local sales taxes. Right now, Amazon even offers AmazonFreash, which provides a way for consumers to shop for groceries online which can make big impacts on the brick-and-mortar retail stores, such as Wal-Mart, K-mart… etc. (“Internet Shopping”, 2013, p. 575, 576, 578).. So, in 2011, Congress first introduced the Marketplace Fairness Act to the public in order to solve this issue, but sadly, it failed (Staley, 2013). It was introduced to the House in May, 2013, again (Kenny, 2013, p. 23). In this paper, the author will take an in-depth look at the Marketplace Fairness Act and discuss what issues are still remaining in this Act.
Steps are Being Taken to Address the Issue
According to McDonald (2013), “the Supreme Court’s decision in Quill Corp. v. North Dakota, 504 U.S. 298(1992) holds that a state may not require a seller that does not have a physical presence in the state to collect tax on sales into the state.” The Marketplace Fairness Act is an attempt to secure Congressional approval to update this e-commerce law. On May 6, 2013 the Senate passed...