Describing it as “an important victory for brick-and-mortar lighting retailers to help bring about retail fairness,” Michael Weems, VP/Government Engagement for the American Lighting Association (ALA), released a statement to the ALA membership that provides further information on the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision in the case of South Dakota v. Wayfair.
“In the days and weeks ahead, the retail industry and state governments will dissect the Court’s opinion to develop the path forward,” Weems states. “This issue has long been important to the lighting industry and we are appreciative of the Court’s decision. ALA was a leader in bringing about retail fairness by submitting two amicus briefs prior to the court hearing oral arguments in April.”
In a 5-4 decision, the Court ruled states have the authority to require online retailers to collect and remit sales tax. In its decision, the Court upheld certain exemptions and protections for small and independent online retailers.
The decision comes at an opportune time for independent lighting retailers, who have been facing a tough battle against internet-based companies that are able to sell products to consumers without collecting sales tax, thus further eroding the business of brick-and-mortar stores. Lighting retailers have been appealing to manufacturers for help in leveling the playing field since online etailers and brick-and-mortar are selling the same products to conceivably the same audience.