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Cloud Computing: BNA Webinar Forecasts State Tax Opportunities and Pitfalls in Hottest Tech Trend
Nov 22, 2011 (04:11 PM EST)

ARLINGTON, Va., Nov. 22, 2011 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Cloud computing technologies have increasingly become the answer for companies looking to minimize information technology costs and gain more customers. Many businesses are harnessing the power of the cloud by offering "software as a service" applications (SaaS), which allow multiple users to remotely access software via the internet.


The substantial revenues generated by cloud computing transactions also have caught the attention of states that are struggling to close massive budget deficits. The result is that state tax auditors are aggressively pursuing additional revenues by asserting new interpretations or applications of laws that often pre-date the advent of cloud computing.

"Without a standard methodology in place for determining the tax treatment of cloud computing transactions across the various states, both the vendors and buyers of SaaS must navigate a daunting patchwork of conflicting state laws and administrative pronouncements," says BNA State Tax Assistant Managing Editor Steven Roll.  A new Cloud Computing webinar from BNA will help state tax practitioners evaluate opportunities, gauge state tax compliance obligations, and better equip businesses to anticipate the potential areas of conflict over these transactions.

The objectives of this 90-minute webinar include providing participants with a conceptual understanding and practical application of the following:

  • The states' varied approaches to classifying SaaS as a service or tangible personal property and the impact this determination has on cloud computing transactions from both a sales and use tax and income tax standpoint.
  • A framework for determining which party to a cloud computing transaction is subject to tax.
  • Key parts of a cloud computing agreement that could impact how the transaction will be taxed.
  • A methodology for determining the "true object" of a cloud computing transaction that involves both a service and the transfer of tangible personal property.
  • The different approaches that various states are using to impose sales or use tax on cloud computing arrangements.
  • An understanding of how cloud computing transactions involving multiple jurisdictions are "sourced" to each state, including the method set forth in the Streamlined Sales and Use Tax Agreement
  • An overview of state approaches to allocating or apportioning income from cloud computing transactions.

Mark Stefan is an Indirect Tax Partner at Ernst & Young with more than 17 years of experience in the state and local tax area. Mr. Stefan has extensive experience addressing sales and use tax transactions and related compliance functions for the high tech industry. He co-authored "Sales Tax Considerations With Regard to Bundling in the Clouds," Journal of Multistate Taxation and Incentives, August 2011, and has helped clients recover tens of millions of dollars in tax through refunds and reductions in audit assessments.

Mauricio Keene, is an Indirect Tax Senior Manager at Ernst & Young with more than 17 years of experience in the sales and use tax and telecommunications tax area. Mr. Keene specializes in multistate sales and use tax services, including assisting clients with transaction tax advice and tax automation/streamlining and audits for clients. He co-authored "Sales Tax Considerations With Regard to Bundling in the Clouds," Journal of Multistate Taxation and Incentives, August 2011, and is a frequent speaker on state and local tax issues including a number of cloud computing workshops and events such as the Tax Executives Institute, and various client workshops.

Steve Wlodychak is a Principal with Ernst & Young LLP's Transaction Advisory Services/State and Local Tax group. Based in Los Angeles, Steve focuses on the state and local tax treatment of mergers and acquisitions and reorganizations, as well as state and local tax bankruptcy and restructuring practice.

Cloud Computing: State Tax Opportunities and Pitfalls in the Forecast for Hottest Tech Trend takes place December 1, 2011, from 12:30 p.m. – 2:00 p.m., (ET). To register for this webinar and obtain further information about CLE and CPE credits, go to or (in the U.S.) call 800.372.1033, menu Option 6, then Option 1. The per site fee is $249.

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About BNA Tax & Accounting Webinars 
BNA Tax & Accounting is the foremost source of tax and accounting research, news, practice tools, and guidance for tax attorneys, CPAs, corporate tax managers, estate planners, and financial accountants.  Designed for today's busy practitioners, our webinars offer the same expertise and relevance that are the hallmark of all BNA Tax & Accounting resources. In just 60-90 minutes, practitioners gain in-depth knowledge on a current tax or accounting topic from experts in that area — and benefit from practical applications that can be put to work immediately. Conference attendees have the opportunity to ask the speakers questions, and may be eligible to earn CLE or CPE credits — all from the convenience of their own office or conference room.

About BNA
BNA, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Bloomberg L.P., is a leading source of legal, regulatory, and business information for professionals. Our network of more than 2,500 reporters, correspondents, and leading practitioners delivers expert analysis, news, practice tools, and guidance — the information that matters most to professionals.  BNA's authoritative coverage spans the full range of legal practice areas, including tax & accounting, labor & employment, intellectual property, banking & securities, employee benefits, health care, privacy & security, human resources, and environment, health & safety.