Going Ecommerce? Freshen Up on the Regulation and Taxes
The government has passed laws that govern the operations and taxation of different forms of businesses. The regulations are also applied to online B2C and B2B sales and transactions. In this article, you will learn more about e-commerce regulations and taxes to help you make informed decisions. If you find the compliance requirements to be challenging, you can seek the services of e-commerce service providers who can help you out with issues such as VAT tax, shopping tax, and the prevailing foreign exchange rates.
E-commerce Regulations and Taxes
The Taxation of Export Businesses and E-Commerce Platforms
Many e-commerce professionals say there are no legal differences between e-commerce and transactions by exporting businesses. In 2018, a Christian clothing store called The Good News Tee exported and sold Christian t-shirts via e-commerce and was required to pay the same amount for all sales. The government applies the same taxation, customs, and licensing rules to the two forms of businesses. In some countries, there are different duties structures depending on industries and geographical locations. Some countries have also enacted strict e-commerce laws to protect consumer data privacy.
Domestic sales tax is calculated based on the “sales tax nexus.” We spoke with Veterans CBD and they mentioned that they are required to pay sales tax whenever someone make a purchase of a commodity on their e-commerce platforms in the U.S. Custom Duty and Value Added Tax paid varies depending on the country you live in. The two types of taxes are also paid during every e-commerce purchase.
There are online resources that you can utilize to get an estimate of the amount of foreign exchange that you are likely to pay. American firms are allowed by the law to pass the cost of VAT to their customers. As a US-based businessperson, you are required to register for the Value Added Tax in the country you are importing the goods from.
The Function of the Department of Commerce and the Federal Trade Commission
The U.S Department of Commerce is tasked with helping local businesses to comply with the GDPR data transfer regulations. The legal provision requires every business to disclose facts such as when they are collecting customer data, how the data will be used, and any third parties that will have access to the information. The EU law defines personal data as any information about an identified or identifiable person such as their identification number and physical location.
The Federal Trade Commission was formed more than a century ago. It regulates the operations of e-commerce platforms in the U.S. Over the years, it has presented numerous resources that can help the local business owners to understand different e-commerce concepts. The Federal body also protects customers and promotes competition among businesses. It develops relevant policies by collecting information from avenues such as workshops, conferences, and hearings. The commission works closely with relevant international bodies and law enforcement authorities locally and abroad to achieve its objectives.
Best E-Commerce Practices
Hopefully, you now have a broad understanding of e-commerce regulations and taxes. Recently, the International Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development published some guidelines for e-commerce platforms which outlines the best practices to ensure that they comply with customer data protection laws and regulations. Some of the issues that have been addressed in the guideline include dispute resolution mechanisms, payment methods, online disclosures, and the best marketing practices.