DMA warns of N.Y. decision

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Direct Marketing Association is warning about the potential ramifications of a recent New York Court of Appeals ruling against Orvis Co. and Vermont Information Processing, saying that those companies' "sporadic activities" in New York obligated them to collect sales and use taxes on mail order purchases made by New York customers. DMA Senior VP Robert Levering said that while the ruling doesn't alter the protections granted direct marketers in a 1992 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, "this decision affects marketers who have minimal activity in New York, even if the activities are intermittent and/or do not involve soliciting for sales." For example, Vermont Information Processing staffers made 40 to 50 visits per year to New York, but only to install and service products. This Thursday the DMA will hold a tax seminar in Chicago to discuss this and other issues.

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