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Canada-wide class action lawsuit against Amazon over collecting sales tax on Zero-Rated (Tax Free) Supplies

  • Last Updated:
  • May 20th, 2017 9:56 pm
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Canada-wide class action lawsuit against Amazon over collecting sales tax on Zero-Rated (Tax Free) Supplies

https://www.clg.org/Class-Action/List-o ... ass-Action

CONSUMER LAW GROUP has launched a Canada-wide class action lawsuit against Amazon, who operate the online retail shopping websites www.amazon.ca and www.amazon.com, on behalf of individuals who purchased goods and were charged sales tax that was not due under federal and/or provincial law on such items as basic groceries, etc.

The class action alleges that Amazon has been: (i) charging and collecting sales tax on Zero-Rated Supplies; and (ii) misrepresenting that sales tax is due under federal and/or provincial legislation, when it is not.

“Basic Groceries” means all food or beverages for human consumption (including accompaniments therefor) to the exclusion of the list of items found in the Excise Tax Act at Schedule VI, Part III, s. 1, including, but not limited to the following summary thereof (mostly consisting of alcohol, junk food and/or snack food for immediate consumption):

a) Alcoholic beverages, carbonated beverages, and non-milk-based fruit (flavoured) beverages containing less than 25 percent natural juice,
b) Candy, chewing gum, chocolate, and all seeds, nuts and popcorn coated therewith or with honey, molasses, syrup, sugar or artificial sweeteners,
c) Chips, crisps, puffs, curls or sticks and other similar snack food or popcorn and brittle pretzels, and granola products, but not including products sold as breakfast cereal,
d) Salted nuts or salted seeds,
e) Snack mixtures containing cereals, nuts, seeds, dried fruit or any other edible product, but not including products sold as breakfast cereal,
f) Ice lollies, juice bars, flavoured, coloured or sweetened ice waters, or similar products, whether frozen or not,
g) Ice cream/milk, sherbet, frozen yogurt/pudding, including non-dairy substitutes therefor and any single serving package containing same,
h) Fruit bars, rolls or drops or similar fruit-based snack foods,
i) Cakes, muffins, pies, pastries, tarts, cookies, doughnuts, brownies, croissants with sweetened filling or coating, and etc., but not including bread products, where they are packaged in quantities of less than six (6) in single servings or are single servings of less than six (6),
j) Beverages, pudding, jello, mousse, flavoured whipped dessert, and etc. except (i) baby food, (ii) when sold in a package with other single servings, and (iii) when the package exceeds a single serving,
k) Food or beverages heated for consumption,
l) Salads not canned or vacuum sealed,
m) Unfrozen sandwiches and the like,
n) Platters of cheese, cold cuts, fruit or vegetables and other arrangements of prepared food,
o) Beverages dispensed on site,
p) Food or beverages sold through catering services or through a vending machine,
q) Food or beverages sold at an establishment where substantially all of the sale of food or beverages are of the enumerated categories above unless the food or beverage is not designed for immediate consumption or the product is and is sold in a quantity of six (6) or more and is not sold for on-site consumption, and
r) Unbottled water, other than ice.

The class action lawsuit identifies the group of affected persons as:

All persons residing in Canada who purchased a good (tangible personal property) from Amazon and who were charged for and who paid sales taxes (GST/HST/PST/QST/RST) that were not due under federal and/or provincial legislation (a “Zero Rated Supply”, including “Basic Groceries” and “Other Products”, as well as, a “Non-Taxable Component” and/or a “PST/RST Exempt Supply”).

If you or someone you know purchased Basic Groceries or other Non-Taxable products from Amazon and paid sales tax on such items, and you wish more information on potential compensation or to be kept advised of the status of the Amazon Undue Sales Tax Collection (GST/HST/PST/QST/RST) Canadian Class Action litigation or any resulting compensation from the Amazon Undue Sales Tax Collection (GST/HST/PST/QST/RST) Canadian Class Action Lawsuit in Canada, Ontario, or Quebec, please provide your contact information to our law firm using the below form.

IF YOU WISH TO JOIN THE CLASS ACTION OR TO SIMPLY GET MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE COMPLETE THE FORM BELOW. Please note that providing your information creates no financial obligation for you. You are not charged any fee or cost for joining this class action. Our law firm is paid a contingency fee from the compensation recovered, only if the class action is successful. All information contained in this transmission is confidential and Consumer Law Group agrees to protect this information against unauthorized use, publication or disclosure.
Last edited by 2Riskit on Mar 27th, 2017 11:50 am, edited 2 times in total.
14 replies
Deal Addict
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Oct 13, 2007
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Finally! I have brought this to Amazon's attention numerous times. It's hard to believe that a company of this size doesn't know what's taxable and what is not taxable.
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Aug 17, 2008
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Sask.
Gee, I never thought to check...
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May 22, 2006
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What did you guys fill for damages and symptoms?
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Oct 13, 2007
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You don't need to give specifics. I just mentioned a couple of products I purchased in the past that I was charged GST on but shouldn't have been charged.
[OP]
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starchoice wrote:
Mar 29th, 2017 9:53 am
You don't need to give specifics. I just mentioned a couple of products I purchased in the past that I was charged GST on but shouldn't have been charged.

If tax is incorrectly calculated on any orders , you can contact Amazons tax department directly for a refund, I just did it last month and got refunded for 5 past orders in the last 3 years.

escalation-salestax@amazon.ca
Last edited by 2Riskit on Mar 29th, 2017 10:03 am, edited 1 time in total.
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2Riskit wrote:
Mar 29th, 2017 10:03 am
If tax is incorrectly calculated on any orders , you can contact Amazons tax department directly for a refund, I just did it last month and got refunded for 15 past orders in the last 3 years.

escalation-salestax@amazon.ca
Yea, so what? Why should I have to? If you had 15 orders with miscalculated tax, it is evidence of an underlying problem. What's maddening is that they will give you a refund but don't bother correcting the error. You had 15 orders so you can well imagine how many there are out there where people never claimed a refund, wrongly assuming that a big company knows how to calculate tax.
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Sep 19, 2002
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Haven't been affected but I rarely purchase food from Amazon. When I do purchase, it's usually candy or canned goods which have the correct tax applied.

If anything, I've benefited from Amazon's tax policies. I've had electronics and general merchandise where zero taxes or EHF was charged.
Deal Addict
Aug 3, 2014
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"Damages or Symptoms experienced"

Claim emotional distress
Jr. Member
Jun 18, 2013
113 posts
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Montreal
Is this site legit? I've never heard of it before. Sorry for the unfamiliarity.
[OP]
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starchoice wrote:
Mar 29th, 2017 1:37 pm
Why should I have to? If you had 15 orders with miscalculated tax, it is evidence of an underlying problem. What's maddening is that they will give you a refund but don't bother correcting the error. You had 15 orders so you can well imagine how many there are out there where people never claimed a refund, wrongly assuming that a big company knows how to calculate tax.
made a typo it was 5 orders, and I was just pass on the email address for anyone who needed it, there is no reason for your hostile comment "Yea, so what? "

.
Newbie
Mar 30, 2017
1 posts
1 upvote
Dear All,

I am the lawyer heading up this class action. We have had almost 400 people join the lawsuit and I would encourage everyone to go to our website at https://www.clg.org/Class-Action/List-o ... ass-Action and put in your contact information. I am very interested in everyone's comments on this forum that they have in the past either: (1) communicated with Amazon that their sales tax was wrong and/or (2) received a refund of the sales tax for their purchases. On the form on our website, there is a section called "other comments"; this is where you can add that information.

You can also follow this case and others that we are involved in by "liking" us on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/clg.org

Thanks,
Jeff Orenstein
1-888-909-7863 ext. 2
Sr. Member
Dec 15, 2008
554 posts
35 upvotes
Vancouver, BC
Hi Jeff,

In 2014, I purchased these products on Amazon.com
- Healthforce Vitamineral Green Drink Powder
- Lactobacillus Sporogenes (Probiotics Supplement)
- Casein Protein Powder
- Glutamine Supplement Powder
- Amazing Grass Organic Wheat Grass Powder
- MET-Rx Big 100 Colossal Meal Replacement Bar

I did have to pay sales tax on them. Am I eligible?
Sr. Member
Sep 22, 2009
577 posts
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Toronto
Class action lawyer trolling rfd. Shameless ambulance chasing
Deal Fanatic
Aug 14, 2007
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Toronto
starchoice wrote:
Mar 29th, 2017 1:37 pm
Yea, so what? Why should I have to? If you had 15 orders with miscalculated tax, it is evidence of an underlying problem. What's maddening is that they will give you a refund but don't bother correcting the error. You had 15 orders so you can well imagine how many there are out there where people never claimed a refund, wrongly assuming that a big company knows how to calculate tax.
Guaranteed it's in their system and it possibly doesn't let them change that, while I myself as well as everyone else here would find that hard to believe, you'd be surprised what I see on a daily basis that can't be changed for several reasons.

Even these massive companies will do anything to save even $1

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