Charged Me 40 Percent Sales Tax

Reader M bought four books online from Borders for $17.82 and was charged $7.07 in sales tax. Unless the books were cigarettes, there was probably an error on Borders’ end. But M says the bookseller refuses to acknowledge a mistake.

M, who says the order included free shipping, writes:

I made a mistake of ordering 4 book worth $17.82 with two $50 gift cards that came with $5 bonus gift card. For delivery to a Michigan address, I was charged $7.07 tax.

I emailed them first to make sure I was only taxed on the books and not on the gift cards. I was told that the $7.07 tax was calculated on the $17.82 books. Even though this would make it a almost a 40% tax rate.

I emailed them several times and even called them. Their Customer Service cannot even conceive that their computer program could have made a mistake. One lady even told me that the tax was $1.77 per book, even on one book worth $3.14.

It is more likely that I was charged $1.07 for the books (6 percent of $17.82) and was overcharged $6 tax (6 percent of $100 Gift Card with Bonus bundle).

Their Customer Service cannot seem to admit and fix this problem.

Have you ever paid such a high online sales tax rate?

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.