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06/28/2011 08:45 PM ID: 89916 Permalink   

Lady Gaga Faces Lawsuit Over Japan Charity Funds


Popstar Lady Gaga is facing a lawsuit over claims she misrepresented donations from the sale of wristbands intended for Japan’s earthquake and tsunami relief.

The singer designed wristbands that say "We Pray For Japan" and sold them for $5. Her website says that "all proceeds go directly to Japan relief efforts".

However, according to the lawsuit, Gaga added sales tax and $3.99 for shipping and handling. The firm that sues the musician claims not all of the money, in fact, goes to Japan.

    WebReporter: estrella242 Show Calling Card      
ASSESS this news: BLOCK this news. Reason:
was on the Paul O´Grady show last week. What a vain and silly woman! Reading this does not surprise me at all. Fake through and through!
  by: captainJane     06/29/2011 10:27 PM     
If she added sales tax on sales to customers outside the state of origin, it doesn´t really matter if she gave the money to Japan or not... she committed fraud.

As for the other charges, she is perfectly entitled to reimburse her organization for the cost of manufacturing the trinkets, shipping the trinkets and then transferring the proceeds to the their final destination.

When the term "all proceeds go to, so and so", that doesn´t mean that five dollars of every five dollar trinket will go to so and so.

But then, like most other charitable organizations, hers is most likely not donating all of its actual proceeds to charity, so before you people start flaming me.... I´m just playing Devil´s advocate. Geeze!
  by: silencedmajority   06/30/2011 12:46 AM     
Too many charitable organizations are run like businesses. People "Work" for the charity, instead of volunteering their time, and they get paid for it...

and then some feel like they should get paid ~more~ for it, because of how "charitable" they are in their hearts, I guess...

If I spend all day cooking dinner for the homeless shelter down the street, it´s with my own money and time, and not because I want to be paid for it, or even Thanked for it... it´s just because I know what it´s like to be kicked to the ground, and walked on.

I like Lady Gaga. I like her music, her silly and absurd flair, and I like the ideals she espouses... If her charity is run in a manner that keeps it from being a money sink, and pays for itself, I have no problem with that.

But the "jury" is still out. And even if it comes back that it wasn´t run properly, it doesn´t necessarily mean the Face of the charity, was the one responsible for how it was run.
  by: vlynxy   06/30/2011 08:19 AM     
  @ silencedmajority  
Sales tax = fraud? Are you serious? Cite the law on that issue.

Clearly her org. did not register as a charity so any sales in the state where she is sited has to collect sales tax since the bracelet sales are not exempt.

What is being done (on its face) is that a portion of the "proceeds" is going to fund whatever. Many retailers do that in their promotions. Most state a definite amount such as $1 of purchase price will go to X. Her Website allows one to add more $$$ than the purchase price as a donation. From there on it is all about accountability and that is lacking as there seems to be no oversight by any public agency nor monitoring by any accounting firm that has public trust. So we have a publicity-seeking private lawyer jumping into the fray who is demanding accountability. As righteous as that may seem the suit may not go anywhere unless that lawyer can prove she has standing.

  by: Talesman12   06/30/2011 08:00 PM     
Collecting sales tax in the name of any given state or municipality when collecting sales tax is not legally mandated by said state/municipality is fraud. Likewise, collecting more sales tax than is mandated is also fraud.

Pick your state:
  by: silencedmajority   07/01/2011 02:59 PM     
  @ silencedmajority  
What are you talking about????

Your links are useless w/o a specific allegation of fraud as to sales tax collection.

Even the 1800-LAW-FIRM lawyer isn´t alleging tax fraud even though her current legal theory probably won´t hold water in light of a few recent federal cases. The woman is merely using the situation to attempt to make a few bucks and generate publicity as business sort of sucks right now for class-action type lawyers of which she holds herself out to be.

Again, where´s the tax fraud? Help me out here. Every national publication covering the issue has no mention of that issue. All that was stated is that sales tax was being collected and w/o more.

  by: Talesman12   07/01/2011 06:59 PM     
  I get it now, Talesman...  
I didn´t claim she had committed tax fraud. If you read my original post again, I said "if" she´d collected sales tax and I based that comment on the wording of the lawsuit.

So again... if she collected sales tax from out of state customers, she committed tax fraud... regardless of whether she donated the money to charity or not.
  by: silencedmajority   07/01/2011 08:23 PM     
  Not quite  
There is zero mention of the Gaga org. collecting outside of her site´s state. It could possibly be INFERRED but after reading 4 independent accounts and only two of which mentioned sales tax at all I don´t read that into it.

As to collecting on behalf of other states ... well that is always a possibility of being legit. Right now the news headlines talk of Amazon and others dumping their affiliates over the (CA) tax issue with many links going to in-depth issues of what the states want, the history of it all as well as court precedents on the tax issue. Follow a few.

I (my company) have had two demand letter in the past year from the revenue departments of other states demanding we remit to them. I sent them a polite F.U. letter as we have no physical presence in their respective states (thank you SCOTUS). It could be possible the GaGa folks do have a presence in other states that would obligate them to collect. I have no direct knowledge either way on that issue and I doubt anyone frequenting here has that knowledge as well.

I am sure if GaGa is collecting sales tax in Michigan where the 1800-LAW-FIRM lawyer resides and the GaGa org. has failed to register with the Department and/or fails to remit to them any/all collected taxes then that state will go after the GaGa folks. That´s the way it is done.
  by: Talesman12   07/02/2011 05:02 AM     
  Two out of four doesn´t equal a not quite.  
Again Talesman, I´m not making allegations. I´m merely pointing out a possibility.

You needn´t take my words personally.
  by: silencedmajority   07/02/2011 06:20 AM     
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