Cyber Monday Calls Attention To Maryland's Little-Paid 'Use Tax' | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : Morning Edition

Filed Under:

Cyber Monday Calls Attention To Maryland's Little-Paid 'Use Tax'

Play associated audio

Today is "Cyber Monday," a day in which online retailers try to mirror some of the same deals offered by brick-and-mortar stores on Black Friday. But a seldom-used law in Maryland could mean some area residents are breaking the law everytime they purchase online. The issue involves a rarely enforced tax called a 'use tax.'

The law requires online shoppers who live in Maryland to pay a 6 percent fee to the state on any goods purchased online which are not taxed by the internet merchant. Online buyers are supposed to file and pay the sales tax for the year on Jan. 21, 2013, but 95 percent of residents don't, and many aren't aware of it.

State Comptroller Peter Franchot acknowledges there is a problem with the law between the online consumer's lack of knowledge about the use tax and the state's inability to apply it, Franchot tells Patch. He's not confortable with the statute and for now won't enforce it, Franchot says.

The lost revenue to the state of Maryland from unpaid use tax amounts to about $200 million a year, according to a report from Patch.

NPR

Look, Mom, I Finally Made It To Broadway!

NPR's Michel Martin will sit down with a panel of award-winning playwrights to ask about diversity in theater. Follow here or join us on Twitter on Friday at 7 p.m. ET, using #NPRMichel.
NPR

Sweet: Dunkin' Donuts and Krispy Kreme Pump Up Pledge On Palm Oil

Two major doughnut chains have bowed to consumer pressure to better police their palm oil purchases. Environmentalists say it's a win for consumers, trees and animals.
NPR

Billionaire GOP Donor Finally Opens Checkbook For 2014

Sheldon Adelson, the Las Vegas casino magnate, is giving $20 million to GOP-oriented "social welfare" groups for use in midterm campaigns.
NPR

Look, Mom, I Finally Made It To Broadway!

NPR's Michel Martin will sit down with a panel of award-winning playwrights to ask about diversity in theater. Follow here or join us on Twitter on Friday at 7 p.m. ET, using #NPRMichel.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.