Do I need a business licence to sell on etsy?

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Original Post

Ive read heaps on here, but I am still not sure if i need a business licence to sell on Etsy. Does it depend what country you are in?

Posted at 5:56 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST


Hmmm. I don't have one.

Posted at 5:57 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

morgansilk says


Posted at 5:57 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

Wait. Yeah I do. LOL
<----moron today!

Posted at 5:57 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

Ive just read a few articles about sellers on here, and they say "well the first thing i did was get my business licence"

Posted at 5:59 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

I guess that depends on what you mean by "have to." Etsy does not require one, as far as I know. However, your town or county may consider you a business and require one.
I have one, it costs $5 a year here and I wanted to stay out of trouble!

Posted at 6:00 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

geelizzie says

Your city may require you to have one, but etsy does not. Check with your city first, if it's like mine, the fee depends on your sales for the year, mine runs 35.00 per year.

Posted at 6:00 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

It depends on where you live. I don't have to have one here because I do not live within the city limits.

I do have one for my photography business because I don't do business at my home, I go out into the city so I need one.

This is unrelated to Etsy but I have to share...
It's not cheap here. They start at $220.00 for the first $1000.00 that you will bring in and goes up every $100.00 after that. Crazy! For example, a hotel here pays in excess of $100,000 to have a business license, yearly.

Posted at 6:05 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

Well . . . Etsy won't make you have a license to sell here but if you live in the states you might want to seriously consider getting one. The tax man will expect you to pay sales tax on all applicable orders.

For instance - I have to pay NYS sales tax on all orders delivered in NYS but I don't have to worry about anything delivered outside of NYS. Also, if I buy something for my business here on Etsy that does not go into my re-sale inventory (beads, findings, etc...) like paper for a display background or a tool or packaging supplies and it comes to me from outside NYS, I have to pay NYS sales tax on those items.

You can try to dodge all of the sales tax garbage by not declaring your Etsy income anywhere on your income taxes but if you are selling more than a few hundred dollars a year or someone decides to report you, you could be faced with fines that are much larger than the hassle is worth.

Posted at 6:05 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

Etsy does not require one. The short answer is that you have to comply with local, state and federal tax laws about collecting sales tax (or VAT) on items you sell.

In the USA, most if not all of the state governments require sellers to collect sales tax and send that sales tax money to the state. In order to collect the sales tax, we must register with our state tax collection agency to get a "Sales and Use Tax Permit." The actual license names can vary from state to state.

Additional local and state registrations can be necessary, depending on how the seller wants to set up the business. For example, a person using a business name "Texas Jewelry Designs" would need to register that name with his/her county offices before the state would issue a tax license to "Texas Jewelry Designs."

Posted at 6:07 pm Dec 3, 2008 EST

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