Connecticut Teachers Are Not Representatives and Do Not Create Nexus for Out-Of-State Bookseller

The Superior Court of Connecticut has overturned the Commissioner of Revenue Services’ decision that school teachers who distribute catalogs and books to students and take student orders are “representatives” who participate in an in-state “sales force” to sell, deliver, and take orders to generate revenue on behalf of an out-of-state company that sells books exclusively to schools. Although the teachers fulfill a crucial administrative role for the bookseller, this function does not elevate the teachers to the level of a “sales force” because the decision to participate in the bookseller’s program remains with the teacher, the teachers may act as customers and purchase books for their own use, and the bonus points given to the teachers as their only form of compensation are for classroom use only and stay with the classroom, not the teacher. Since it is determined that the teachers are not representatives of the bookseller, their administrative activities do not establish nexus for the bookseller.

(Scholastic Book Clubs, Inc. v. Commissioner of Revenue Services, Connecticut Superior Court, Nos. CV07 4013027 S and CV 07 4013028 S, April 9, 2009)

Posted on July 9, 2009