New Hampshire – “Live Free Or Die” Governor Sununu and State Leaders Unveil Strategy To Fight Supreme Court Sales Tax Case

Governor Sununu released a statement detailing New Hampshire’s response to the Wayfair decision. In summary, the Governor intends to aggressively defend their “pro-growth low-tax economy.”

“If you try to come into our state and force our businesses to collect a sales tax in manner that violates our laws or the United States Constitution, you will be in for the fight of your life. Live free or die is not just a slogan on a license plate.”

The Governor’s office is working tirelessly with legislative leadership and the Attorney General’s office to craft legislation. While final details are still being worked out, New Hampshire will erect every possible and constitutionally permissible legal and procedural hurdle to prevent other states from forcing our businesses to collect sales and use taxes. Some of the provisions we will enact are as follows:

  • First, any out of state taxing authority seeking to audit or impose tax collection obligations on a New Hampshire business will be required to notify the New Hampshire Department of Justice.
  • Second, before proceeding, the out of state taxing authority will be required to receive a written determination, from the New Hampshire Department of Justice, that the authority’s statutes provide certain protections and meet strict requirements.
  • Third, these protections and requirements will include a safe harbor for a certain amount of sales, a prohibition against retroactive enforcement, a safe harbor for small businesses, and other strict requirements. In addition, an out of state taxing authority will have to show that its laws will not impose an unconstitutional burden on New Hampshire businesses.
  • Fourth, the New Hampshire Department of Justice will be empowered to file an expedited suit to block any attempt to impose tax collection obligations undertaken in violation of this new law.

New Hampshire to Fight Back