April 2023 Roundup: Tax laws you need to know

While you focus on your business, we stay on top of legislative and policy changes that can affect your tax compliance.

Nuts and bolts

Omnichannel surfing. Imagine your customer sees an Instagram ad for a great jacket (or book, or hot sauce, or commercial-grade farming equipment). They click through the link to your website and fill up a cart. Later, they return to the cart on a different device, and their sequin bolero, celebrity memoir, small-batch chili sauce, and large tractor selections are all still there, ready to ship or pick up in-store. That’s the magic of an omnichannel retail strategy.

Seasonal tax season. Are you planning a coastal getaway to Bar Harbor? A leaf-peeping expedition in Acadia National Park? If HP 941 passes, you could be paying more sales tax in Maine between May and October. Learn more about how seasonal sales tax works and which states have already implemented it.

Sales tax nexus strikes again. There are many ways a business can establish a sales tax obligation in another state, and many types of nexus to be aware of. Here’s what to do if you find that your business has economic, physical, click-through, or affiliate nexus in a new jurisdiction. 

Multicloudy skies. Move over stratus and cumulonimbus — there are new clouds in town, and they’re making it easier to manage communications, accounting, and tax compliance systems. But how do you make sure your multicloud strategy doesn’t rain on your business operations? It might be time to adopt a cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution.

Small delivery fees in The Big Apple. If Senate Bill S5895 passes, a new surcharge will be added to online sales delivered into New York City. While many trends start in New York, this trend of adding a surcharge to items delivered by vehicle kicked off in Colorado last July, and spread to Minnesota shortly afterward. Could your state follow suit?

Made in the USA. The United States has produced some great things — the telephone, the airplane, and Bruce Springsteen are just a few examples — but U.S. manufacturing has really slowed down in the last 20 years. Here’s how domestic manufacturing is making a comeback — and why it might make sense for your small business

Property: This time it’s personal. Personal property — like machinery, tools, and vehicles — is taxed just like real property (land and real estate), but filling out a personal property rendition can be time-consuming and confusing. Here’s how you can do it in five easy steps

Ecommerce compliance. Your ecommerce platform can help you attract new customers, grow your business, and even give you insights into buying habits and trends. But can it help you handle sales tax? Dig into the capabilities of popular ecommerce platforms and whether you should add a separate tax solution to your cart.

Pass the remote (sellers). Starting July 1, 2023, many retailers without a physical presence in a local taxing jurisdiction in Colorado will no longer be required to apply for a business license in that jurisdiction. This should simplify compliance for remote businesses, but Colorado remains a tricky state for tax compliance.

Get down to business (licenses). Which business licenses do you need to operate? How do you get them? Do they need to be renewed? We teamed up with Chain Store Age to survey business owners about their biggest licensing challenges — and explain how you can navigate them.

Gold life rafts to protect against a “tsunami of inflation.” When faced with economic challenges, some Mainers look to the wisdom of their pirate ancestors. Earlier this year, a bill was introduced to exempt gold, silver, and bullion from Maine state sales tax. While the measure failed to become law, the arguments in favor were a treasure trove of testimonies.

Money, technology, pancakes — some things are better in stacks. The technology and software you use to run your platform are all “stacked” together to create your tech stack. But how do you make sure all your different components are working together seamlessly and meeting your business needs?

From the tap

A cocktail of compliance concerns. What could you do with an extra 50 hours? A recent survey from Avalara and Potentiate shows that beverage alcohol businesses spend that much time each week on tax compliance. Read more insights from the wineries, breweries, distilleries, and other beverage alcohol retailers we spoke with.

Up in smoke

Clearing the compliance haze. How are best-in-class tobacco and vape businesses managing tax compliance? They’re turning to technology and automating to improve accuracy. See how your tobacco or vape business stacks up.

Battle of the bans. In June 2022, the FDA ordered a ban on the sale of vaping products from one of the best-selling vaping brands, but Juul Labs Inc. immediately went to court and received a temporary stay on the ban. Where do they stand now?

An excess of excise

Full speed ahead. What are best-in-class energy and fuel companies doing to stay ahead of the competition? A recent study by Aberdeen Strategy & Research found companies that invest in a tax management solution are running laps around the other guys. 

Check out the Avalara resource center for more helpful information.

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