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Oregon sued website tobacco sites to get the names of people

that bought from them and...
Oregon sued website tobacco sites to get the names of people that bought from them and had it sent to oregon.Now that they have our names they are coming after us for the taxes 5 years after I bought a product from that website.Is this legal or they just strong arming me for money? I don't have to pay taxes at check out. Shouldn't the  website have to pay any tax they did not colect at check out? Should I have to pay the tax they didn't colect 5 years ago? I thought all info I gave them was confidential  and no one else would ever see it.  What are my rights here?  Can any one sue and get all info about anyone? Mike
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7/2/2012
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,592
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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Thanks for asking your question! I'm sorry to hear about your tax issue and I'm going to try my best to help you understand or resolve it.

I'm really sorry to hear about this issue. When it comes to sales taxes and taxes such as tobacco taxes - they are levied to the purchaser, but collected by the seller. If the seller doesn't collect them there are stiff penalties, but the tax itself is the liability of the person who purchased the goods.

For example, when you buy something on Amazon.com they may not collect sales tax on your purchase. However, if you do things to the letter of the law you would actually submit the tax on the purchase to your state. Amazon had no liability to collect because of the way that the current laws on internet sales work - but each indvididual buyer is liable for that tax.

So, yes - you are liable for the tax; Also, your information IS private information, but tax authorities can get your information from companies you have done business with. The problem would be if they gave another company your information. They gave your information to a government agency after a court order. Unfortunately, there's not much you can do.

The transfer of your personal information was most likely due to the Jenkins Act, a federal law passed in 1949 that requires anyone who sells cigarettes across a state line to an individual or unlicensed distributor to report the transaction to the state's tobacco tax administrator. The transfer of your information was done because it was required by law.

I know this probably isn't the news you wanted to hear; however, please don't use this against me when issuing a rating. I hope I have at least gave you some general information about what has happened in your unique situation. It's unfortunate, but you are liable for the tax.

If this helped, then rate my service as "excellent" so that I can be compensated for assisting you today. Otherwise, click "reply" or "continue conversation" for continued dialog with me.

VERY IMPORTANT - IF you are having DIFFICULTY RATING, please let me know IMMEDIATELY. If you don't rate my response, I don't get paid even though your deposit is retained by the site. Thanks for your cooperation in this matter.
Megan C
Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,592
Experience: Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
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Megan C, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 16,592
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