This week, the Governor of Rhode Island signed the budget bill (HB 5983) which made several changes to Rhode Island's tax laws. One of those changes, the "Amazon" nexus provision.
The "Amazon" provision is effective June 30, 2009, and establishes a rebuttable presumption that a seller has nexus in Rhode Island if the seller is soliciting business in the state through an agent, if the seller enters into an agreement with a state resident under which the resident for a commission or other consideration, refers potential customers to the seller through a website link or otherwise.
The presumption applies if the sales by the resident through the agreement exceed $5,000 in a year.
The presumption can be overcome by proof that the resident did not engage in any solicitation on behalf of the seller.
If you are an online retailer who allows other parties (related or unrelated) in Rhode Island to solicit business on your behalf in any way, or via a web site link, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org to discuss the impact of this law on your business.