Multistate Challenges to Quill Physical Presence Standard: Navigating Nexus in State Sales and Income Tax

A live 110-minute CPE webinar with interactive Q&A

Wednesday, August 30, 2017 (in 9 days)
1:00pm-2:50pm EDT, 10:00am-11:50am PDT

This webinar will provide SALT practitioners and Corporate Tax professionals charged with sales tax oversight responsibilities with an updated look at states’ efforts in key states to expand what constitutes a physical presence for sales tax collection and remittance purposes or to bypass the landmark Supreme Court standard adopted in Quill in an effort to increase tax revenues from internet sales.


As the retail sales landscape continues to change from in-store purchases made from brick-and-mortar locations, states are constantly seeking ways to make up sales tax revenue shortfalls. A significant component of these efforts is comprised of states seeking ways to impose sales tax jurisdiction over internet-based sales shipped to individuals within their states. However, states have been limited in their tax reach by the "physical presence" standard articulated in Quill v North Dakota. Several states have enacted statutes, regulations or administrative guidance to try to challenge or reinterpret Quill, through alternate economic or factor presence standards.

For nonresident companies making sales into those states seeking to challenge Quill, these efforts present significant reporting, collection and remittance challenges, as well as uncertainty as to whether they should comply with these questionably constitutional laws. Tax advisers are constantly faced with the task of keeping up with various states' interpretations of just what constitutes taxable "presence," beyond the traditional understanding of what the Supreme Court held as physical presence.

Tax advisers should be keenly aware of the status of various state initiatives. South Dakota will almost certainly appeal its loss in Wayfair to the Supreme Court, and several other states including Alabama have pending challenges as they also seek to broaden tax jurisdiction to cover internet sales. Despite these constitutional challenges, several states have introduced and enacted factor presence economic nexus legislation during the first half of 2017, including Indiana, Maine, North Dakota and Wyoming.

Listen as our experienced panel provides a current update on key states' initiatives to circumvent or challenge the long-established Quill standard of physical presence as a prerequisite to imposing state sales or income tax.


  1. Current Quill Standard Requiring Physical Presence
  2. State legislative challenges to Physical Presence standards: Sales/transaction thresholds
    1. South Dakota
    2. North Dakota
    3. Wyoming
  3. Other states’ regulatory challenges to Quill
    1. Alabama
    2. Tennessee
    3. Massachusetts
  4. States that have successfully enacted economic nexus legislation in the first half of 2017
    1. Indiana
    2. Maine
    3. Wyoming
    4. North Dakota
  5. Other expansive efforts taken by states
    1. Marketplace provider nexus provisions
    2. Notification and reporting laws
  6. Planning strategies in anticipation of possible reversal of Quill


The panel will reviews these and other important topics:

  • States that are currently presenting or contemplating statutory challenges to Quill's physical presence standard
  • Mitigating risk in anticipation of the reversal of Quill
  • How apportionment factors impact how a company may reach revenue or transactions thresholds.
  • Risks and possible benefits of waiting to determine further state actions in terms of statutes challenging Quill standard

Learning Objectives

After completing this course, you will be able to:

  • Identify the basis on which states are premising legislative or regulatory challenges to Quill standard
  • Recognize the status of court challenges to state nexus initiatives
  • Determine planning options to reduce and manage sales tax risk on transactions shipped into states engaged in Quill challenges
  • Discern the role apportionment factors may play in reaching revenue or transaction thresholds in states seeking to broaden sales tax nexus


Sylvia F. Dion, CPA, Founder & Managing Member
PrietoDion Consulting Partners, Westford, Mass.

Ms. Dion has over twenty years of broad-based tax experience and specializes in providing tax consulting services to companies throughout the U.S. Prior to launching the consulting practice, she was a senior manager and acting practice leader for Grant Thornton’s Boston State & Local Tax (“SALT”) practice. Before that, she was a senior manager in Ernst & Young’s SALT Practice and the firm’s New England Area Director of Employment Tax Services.

Timothy A. Gustafson, Counsel
Eversheds Sutherland, Sacramento, Calif.

Mr. Gustafson counsels clients on all aspects of state and local tax controversy, including audits, administrative appeals and litigation. He is extensively experienced on issues and matters before the California Franchise Tax Board and the California State Board of Equalization. He routinely advises financial institutions, technology service providers and retailers and manufacturers on sales and use, income and franchise taxes, and key related issues including apportionment, nexus, gross receipts, business and nonbusiness income, penalties, deductions and credits.

James A. Ortiz, State and Local Tax Senior Manager
REDW, Albuquerque, N.M.

Mr. Ortiz concentrates on the State & Local Tax field, specializing in sales and use tax, and multistate income tax. He also regularly prepares and provides audit defense for state and federal tax credit filings. Prior to joining REDW, he worked at the New Mexico Taxation & Revenue Department in a variety of roles, including serving as an auditor in the Audit & Compliance Division, as well as developing internal procedures for auditing specialty refund claims.

Registration per Person for Live Event

Live Webinar $247.00

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CPE per Person on Live Event

Continuing Professional Education credit processing is available for an additional fee. CPE processing must be ordered prior to the event. To qualify for CPE you may not listen via the telephone.

This program is eligible for 2.0 CPE credits.

  • Field of Study: Taxes.
  • Level of Knowledge: Intermediate.
  • Advance Preparation: None.
  • Teaching Method: Seminar/Lecture.
  • Delivery Method: Group-Internet (via computer).
  • Attendance Monitoring Method: Attendance is monitored electronically via a participant's PIN and through a series of verification codes announced throughout the presentation.
  • Prerequisite: Three years+ business or public firm experience at mid-level within the organization, dealing with complex multi-state sales and use tax collecting and reporting; supervisory authority over other preparers/accountants. Knowledge of the U.S. Supreme Court's ruling in Quill v. North Dakota, Multi State Tax Commission model nexus standards, and the primary nexus approaches used by most states.

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Manager of Domestic Taxes


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