How tax is collected from purchases on Whatnot How tax is collected from purchases on Whatnot

How tax is collected from purchases on Whatnot

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Who is responsible for collecting taxes from purchases on Whatnot can depend on the buyer’s and seller’s locations, the value of the shipment and the seller's tax registration status.

We’ve broken down how taxes work based on a buyer’s and seller’s locations in the examples below.

Notes:

  1. Examples are based on the average VAT, GST, PST, U.S. sales and use taxes and customs duty rates. These rates will vary based on the item and the buyer’s and seller’s locations.
  2. Shipping costs not depicted in examples for simplicity.  Shipping charges may be subject to taxes based on the circumstances of the sale.

Sales to buyers in the U.S.

At the time of purchase, Whatnot will charge U.S. buyers sales tax at the applicable rate and remit it to the relevant tax authority.

  • Sales and use taxes may be applicable at various jurisdictional levels including, state, country, city and parish.
  • In some states, sales and use tax rates, rules, and regulations are based on the location of the seller and the origin of the sale (origin-based sourcing). In others, sales and use taxes are based on the location of the buyer and the destination of the sale (destination-based sourcing).  In origin states we’re responsible for applying the sales and use tax rate determined by the ship-from address on all taxable sales.
  • Sale price is exclusive of applicable U.S. sales and use taxes.
  • See the states that Whatnot Inc. collects sales tax can be found here.
  • If you are a U.S. seller and have a sales or use tax exemption certificate, information on how to apply for a sales tax exemption can be found here.
Transaction breakdown
Purchase price (excluding taxes) $100
Sales tax on purchase (7%) $7.00
Order total $107

Sales within Canada

Whatnot is obligated to charge and collect applicable GST/HST/PST/QST on sales to Canadian buyers on behalf of Canadian sellers.

  • Canadian GST/HST/QST registered sellers elect Whatnot to collect and remit applicable GST/HST/QST on their behalf.  See here for more details on this election and associated obligations for sellers.
  • Sellers do not have an obligation to collect sales tax on sales to U.S. buyers.
  • Sales prices are exclusive of applicable Canadian GST/HST/PST/QST.
Transaction breakdown
Purchase price (excluding GST/HST/PST/QST) C$100
GST (5%) C$5.00
HST/PST/QST (10%) C$15.00
Order total C$120

Shipments to buyers in Saskatchewan and Manitoba from outside Canada

Whatnot is obligated to charge and collect Saskatchewan and Manitoba PST on sales to Canadian buyers from sellers located outside of Canada.

Sales within the EU or UK (including Northern Ireland)

UK VAT registered sellers are responsible for collecting and remitting VAT on UK to UK sales.  

Sellers registered for VAT in the EU (either in a certain EU country or across the EU) are responsible for collecting and remitting VAT on orders to buyers in the country(ies) in which they are registered.

  • Sales prices within the UK and EU are considered inclusive of any applicable VAT.
  • VAT registered sellers should independently monitor their requirement to register for VAT.  Whatnot does not assume any liability if sellers do not register for VAT when required.

Seller is not registered for VAT:

Transaction breakdown
Purchase price  £/€100
 Order total  £/€100

Seller is VAT registered:

Transaction breakdown
Purchase price (inclusive of VAT) £/€100
    VAT (20%) £/€16.67
Order total £/€100

Shipments to buyers in the EU from outside the EU

Shipments less than €150

If the total purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not VAT) of items in a single shipment are less than €150, Whatnot is responsible for collecting import VAT at checkout.

  • Winning auction bids are exclusive of VAT. For purchases from live auctions, Whatnot will add the additional VAT on to the winning auction price at the applicable rate and remit the tax to the relevant tax authority. 
  • For But It Now purchase, the price displayed at checkout will include the applicable import VAT.
  • No customs duties are levied on shipments worth less than €150 entering the EU.
  • While the cost of shipping is excluded from the value of the shipment to determine if the value is less than €150, it is subject to import VAT either at checkout or upon import.
Transaction breakdown
Winning auction bid (VAT exclusive) €100
      Whatnot collected VAT (20%) €20
Order total €120

Shipments greater than €150

If the purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not VAT) of goods in a single shipment is greater than €150, buyers will pay applicable import VAT and customs duties when the shipment arrives at their local facility.

Transaction breakdown
Shipment value €200
VAT at checkout €0
Customs at checkout €0
Order total €200
   
VAT due when shipment arrives (20%) €40
Customs due when shipment arrives (2.5%) €5

In certain circumstances, VAT collected at checkout may be reimbursed to buyers if a shipment value is higher than the €150 threshold.  For example, if multiple items are bundled into a single shipment. In this case the VAT will be due upon arrival into the EU, rather than at checkout.

If you paid import taxes or duty as part of clearing your parcel through customs but you then returned the item, please contact the customs authority regarding a refund of the charges.

Shipments to UK buyers from outside the UK (including Northern Ireland)

Shipments less than £135

If the total purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not VAT) of items in a single shipment are less than £135, Whatnot is responsible for collecting import VAT at checkout.

  • Winning auction bids are exclusive of VAT. For purchases from live auctions, Whatnot will add the additional VAT on to the winning auction price at the applicable rate and remit the tax to the relevant tax authority. 
  • For But It Now purchase, the price displayed at checkout will include the applicable import VAT.
  • No customs duties are levied on shipments worth less than £135 entering the EU.
  • While the cost of shipping is excluded from the value of the shipment to determine if the value is less than £135, it is subject to import VAT either at checkout or upon import.
Transaction breakdown
Winning auction bid (VAT exclusive) £100
      Whatnot collected VAT (20%) £20
Order total £120

Shipments greater than £135

If the purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not VAT) of goods in a single shipment is greater than £135, buyers will pay applicable import VAT and customs duties when the shipment arrives at their local facility.

Transaction breakdown
Shipment value £200
VAT at checkout £0
Customs at checkout £0
Order total £200
   
VAT due when shipment arrives (20%) £40
Customs due when shipment arrives (2.5%) £5

In certain circumstances, VAT collected at checkout may be reimbursed to buyers if a shipment value is higher than the £135 threshold.  For example, if multiple items are bundled into a single shipment. In this case the VAT will be due upon arrival into the UK, rather than at checkout.

If you paid import taxes or duty as part of clearing your parcel through customs but you then returned the item, please contact the customs authority regarding a refund of the charges.

Exception for Northern Ireland

Whatnot will not collect VAT at checkout for any sales from EU sellers to Northern Irish buyers.  VAT is only due at checkout on sales from sellers outside of the UK and the EU for below value shipments.

Shipments to Australian and New Zealand buyers

Country threshold

  • Australia: AU$ 1,000
  • New Zealand: NZ$ 1,000

Shipments below the Country Threshold

If the purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not GST) of goods in a single shipment, is less than the Country Threshold (see above), Whatnot is responsible for collecting GST at checkout. 

  • Whatnot will add the additional GST on to the winning actuation price at the applicable rate and remit the tax to the local tax authority. 
  • No customs duties are levied on shipments with a value below the country threshold.
  • Listing prices or live auction winning bids are exclusive of import GST.
Transaction breakdown
Shipment value $100
      Whatnot collected GST (10%) $10
Order total $110

Shipments above the Country Threshold

If the purchase price (excluding shipping costs, but not GST) of goods in a single shipment is greater than the Country Threshold, buyers will pay applicable import GST and customs duties when the shipment arrives at their local facility.

Transaction breakdown
Shipment value $2,000
GST at checkout $0
Customs at checkout $0
Order total $2,000
   
VAT due when shipment arrives (10%) $200
Customs due when shipment arrives (assumed 5%) $100

In certain circumstances, GST collected at checkout may be reimbursed to buyers if a shipment value is higher than the Country Threshold.  For example, if multiple items are bundled into a single shipment. In this case the GST will be due upon arrival into the country, rather than at checkout.

If you paid import taxes or duty as part of clearing your parcel through customs but you then returned the item, please contact the customs authority regarding a refund of the charges.

Disclaimer

Every buyer’s and seller's situation is unique and so are their specific tax circumstances. The above stated information should not be considered as tax advice, but as a general overview of relevant tax rules. Whatnot does not provide you with tax advice for your individual situation, and therefore we strongly recommend speaking with a professional tax advisor for tailored advice.

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