Playing games on a PlayStation console while living in Chicago, Illinois, is getting more expensive – about 9% more expensive. Sony has revealed plans to begin charging another 9% in taxes through PlayStation Store as part of Chicago's recently expanded Amusement Tax. The tax, which Sony has previously failed to implement, will come into effect from November 14, and will affect all digital purchases through PlayStation Store.
Chicago Amusement Tax is not new. The tax was first implemented in the city in 2015, a tax aimed at "amusements" as specifically included digital services. At that time, the tax fee was somewhat limited, focusing on streaming services like Netflix and Spotify, but has since expanded to other services as the legal guidance of the tax grew more established. Sony has avoided the tax requirement so far, although the reasons for this are unclear.
If Chicago Amusement Tax was not enough to frustrate citizens' citizens, the state of Illinois in 2017 underwent an amendment as part of its budget to expand the effective 6.25% sales tax to a wider range of online services. It is unclear how the state sales tax has changed prices on PlayStation since the change was passed.
For Chicagoans it's unlikely that the entertainment tax will disappear or be changed in the near future. But there is still some hope, as both Apple and Netflix pursue lawsuits against the city as opposed to the amusement tax. Apple's suit claims that the amusement tax not only violates state and American constitutions, but also the 1998 Tax Exemption Act, which prevents all government levels from targeting net tax.
The current state of Apple's lawsuit is unclear, but considering the width of the suit, it's probably a long and costly effort. Considering Chicago's entertainment tax brings in a reported $ 12 million annually, Apple's lawsuit alone may cost more than what taxes bring in.
Anyway, 14 November PlayStation console owners in Chicago will be charged another 9% on purchases through PlayStation Store.
Source: David Lee Matthews – Twitter