(12/18/18) Before Louisiana starts taxing all purchases made online, a state panel must still iron out some definitions — in large part because of the state’s decentralized sales tax structure, in which rates depend on where users buy.
Members of the state’s remote sellers commission are still figuring out whether businesses should register with the state itself or with more localized taxing bodies. They are unlikely to reach consensus until early 2019.
In the meantime, online retailers are registering with the commission in advance, on a voluntary basis.
“Until we are ready with specific software for those recording the specific local rates, we’ll continue the voluntary process,” said state Revenue Secretary Kimberly Lewis Robinson.
Businesses that have registered so far, including Amazon and Wayfair, are already taxing purchases. Participating outlets are charging an interim 8.45 percent rate. Of that, 4.45 percent is going to the state, while the other 4 percent is being sent to local jurisdictions.
The local rate is subject to change once the remote sellers commission starts mandating online sales taxes sometime early next year.
A U.S. Supreme Court decision in June gave states the ability to collect sales taxes from online sellers in different states. The law defines a “remote seller” as any business with more than $100,000 in internet sales or more than 200 web-based transactions.