The Washington Court of Appeals held that Gartner, Inc.’s online research service was a digital automated service subject to the state’s retail sales tax and retailing Business and Occupation (B&O) Tax. Gartner, Inc. v. Washington Department of Revenue, No. 51637-3-II (Wash. App. Div. 2 Jan. 13, 2020). This decision addressed the scope of Washington’s “human effort” exclusion from the retail sales tax, the applicability of the “bundled transaction” and “true object” tests to offerings that contain taxable and nontaxable components, and the Internet Tax Freedom Act.
On December 26, 2019, the New York State Supreme Court Appellate Division issued a strong rebuke to retroactivity by holding that a law with a 97-day retroactivity period violated the taxpayer’s Due Process rights. Matter of Mackenzie Hughes LLP et al. v. New York State Tax Appeals Trib. The Supreme Court Appellate Division, Third Department—New York’s intermediate appellate court—held the taxpayer’s Due Process rights were violated because: 1) the retroactive application of the law did not serve a public purpose; 2) the taxpayer did not have adequate forewarning of the law change; and 3) the application of the law represented a 97-day retroactivity period.
The Oregon Department of Revenue (DOR) has just released a series of eight draft administrative rules for Oregon’s new Corporate Activity Tax (CAT) that go into effect on January 1, 2020. In “The CAT is Almost Out of the Bag! Oregon Releases First Set of Draft CAT Rules,” SALT team members Carley Roberts, Robert P. Merten III and Afshin Michael Khazaeli examine the rules themselves, what this may mean for companies calculating commercial activity, and more.
CPA and former Big 4 associate, Afshin Khazaeli joins Pillsbury SALT!
Afshin advises clients on a variety of state and local tax matters, including controversy, planning, and audit defense, across all state and local tax types, including sales and use, income, franchise, and property tax. Pillsbury SALT is thrilled to welcome him to our award-winning team. Afshin is based in Pillsbury’s Sacramento office.
5 Questions with Afshin
- Who inspires you?
I’m inspired by my father and his relentlessness.
- What drew you to the law?
I love being a trusted advocate for my clients.
- What aspect of State and Local Tax law do you find most interesting?
State and local tax is constantly changing, evolving and adapting.
- What has been your most challenging or rewarding case?
Each case has been uniquely challenging, and the most rewarding cases are when I help my clients achieve unexpectedly great results.
- What is your go-to comfort food?
Persian food! Reminds me of my mother’s cooking and being back at home.
Welcome to Pillsbury SALT, Afshin!
In this article, Carley Roberts and co-authors discuss some of the more significant locally imposed taxes that could cause unexpected issues for businesses entering a new jurisdiction. They highlight Chicago Personal Property Lease Transaction Tax, San Francisco local taxes, New York City commercial rent tax, New Jersey local property tax, Jersey City payroll tax, New Jersey income tax credits, and Tennessee business tax.
To read the article, please click here.
Pillsbury SALT was proud to present TEI/IPT Silicon Valley’s State and Local Tax Day & IPT Joint Meeting on December 5! The team presented a 3/4-day seminar that focused on topics related to the State and Local Tax implications of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in Wayfair, and other hot topics in state and local taxation.
Tax Executives Institute’s New York Chapter presents its 56th Annual Tax Symposium on December 12! The Symposium offers three concurrent technical tax sessions for Federal, State and Local and International Taxes with a wide range of important topics and great speakers. The State and Local Tax session will feature a New York Update Session with Michael Schmidt, New York State Commissioner – Department of Taxation and Finance and Deborah Liebman, Deputy Counsel, New York State DTF. In addition, acting Director, Division of Taxation, John Ficara will be joining for a New Jersey Tax Reform 2019 Edition discussion.
Pillsbury SALT partner Marc Simonetti will present “The State of State and Local Tax: Developments and Trends” as a part of the State and Local Tax session from 4:00pm-5:00pm ET.
For more information and to register, please visit the event page.
Pillsbury has earned a total of 154 national and regional practice rankings in the latest U.S. News – Best Lawyers 2020 Best Law Firms survey.
The Tax team’s rankings include:
- National, Tier 1 in Litigation – Tax and Tax Law
- Miami, Tier 1 in Tax Law
- New York City, Tier 3 in Tax Law
- San Francisco, Tier 1 in Litigation – Tax and Tax Law
To view Pillsbury’s complete list of practice rankings, click here.
The U.S. News – Best Lawyers Best Law Firms rankings are based on a rigorous evaluation process that includes the collection of client and lawyer evaluations, peer review from leading attorneys in the ﬁeld, and review of additional information provided by law ﬁrms as part of the formal submission process. To be eligible for a 2020 ranking, a law ﬁrm must have at least one lawyer recognized in the 25th Edition of The Best Lawyers in America list for that particular location and specialty.
Pillsbury SALT attorneys Carley Roberts, Robert P. Merten III and Mike Le co-authored “Sunny State Shade: Arizona’s Objection to California’s Tax Reach” in a recent edition of SeeSALT Digest, by Tax Notes State. In this article, Carley, Robert and Mike evaluate and provide an update on Arizona’s judicial objection to the reach of California’s tax imposition on out-of-state companies whose only connection to California is a passive investment interest.
To read the article, please click here.
New York State increased the sales tax economic factor presence nexus threshold from $300,000 to $500,000. The change is retroactive to June 1, 2019. Accordingly, marketplace providers with no physical presence in the state are required to register and collect New York sales tax if the provider’s gross receipts from sales of tangible personal property in New York is equal to or exceeds $500,000 and facilitated more than 100 sales of tangible personal property delivered in the state. The sales are computed over the past four sales tax quarters. It’s not clear what prompted the state to increase the gross receipts threshold of the economic nexus standard—there are no other changes to the definition of marketplace provider, marketplace sellers or to any of the liability relief provisions. (For more information, access the recently issued marketplace provider guidance here, and the prior guidance here.)