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Senate Tax Writers Introduce Bipartisan Digital Goods Bill

Top Senate tax writers have introduced a bipartisan bill to prevent duplicative taxation on digital goods and services. The bill aims to establish a framework across multiple jurisdictions for taxation of digital goods and services, including electronic music, literature, and mobile apps, among other things.

The Digital Goods and Services Tax Fairness Act (Sen. 3581) was reintroduced on October 11 by Senate Finance Committee (SFC) ranking member Ron Wyden, D-Ore., and SFC member John Thune, R-S.D. A similar measure was previously introduced in 2015 by Thune and Wyden in the 114th Congress. A companion bill is expected to be reintroduced in the House.

Digital Marketplace

While the digital marketplace continues to evolve, federal law addressing taxation of digital goods and services “lags” behind, according to a joint press release issued by Thune and Wyden. “As a result, some consumers can be taxed multiple times on a single digitally delivered product or service by different tax jurisdictions,” Thune said. “Our bipartisan legislation simply prevents this duplicative and discriminatory taxation, which will help ensure today’s digital economy isn’t held back unnecessarily and can continue to offer opportunities to entrepreneurs and consumers alike,” Thune added.

“Preventing unfair taxes on music, books, and other important goods and services benefits consumers and innovators alike,” Wyden said. “This bipartisan legislation solves a 21st century tax riddle by establishing a comprehensive set of rules for states to follow.”

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