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Thread: W8-BEN form, what is it?


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Permlink Replies: 6 - Pages: 1 - Last Post: Jun 19, 2012 8:59 AM Last Post By: 19penguin72
pdavid106

Posts: 18
Registered: 03/19/12
W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 14, 2012 2:19 AM
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Hi, I recieved no payment from Amazon and emailed and asked why as I believe I had hit the threshold and more than covered the 60 day payment timeline.

Anyway they stated something about not filling in the W8-BEN form. I seriously have no idea what this is. Please can someone tell me in a non jargon way what this is?

Also does it delay payment or stop it until they recieve it?

New to all this so bear with me

Much appreciated

Paul
pdavid106

Posts: 18
Registered: 03/19/12
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 14, 2012 2:50 AM   in response to: pdavid106 in response to: pdavid106
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Ok after reading up I sort of get it now, but the email from Amazon just said this is what I needed to fill in, yet when I look it asks for Tax identification number or if an individual then ITIN number or something.

I am a sole/indivdual trader from the UK, can anyone tell me exactly what forms I need to send in please.

Thanks Paul
19penguin72

Posts: 17
Registered: 05/03/12
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 14, 2012 11:05 AM   in response to: pdavid106 in response to: pdavid106
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To save time answering this question when it comes up, I wrote a blog post about what you need to do to claim ALL of your royalties from Amazon. You can find it here http://artisansoap.co.uk/blog/2012/05/kindle-ebooks-and-the-irs/

You need an American tax id, and you need to send the w8-ben to Amazon. It is easier than you think.
rachsh

Posts: 202
Registered: 12/27/10
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 16, 2012 12:56 PM   in response to: 19penguin72 in response to: 19penguin72
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If only it was as simple as your blog post suggests. What if you don't have a passport?

The only ID doc I could send was my birth certificate, which had to be certified from the issuing office, costly and with a few weeks' wait. Also you have to send a letter from each withholding agent, and in the case of Smashwords, takes weeks to arrive. On top of this, you have to find the answers to obscure questions such as tax treaty numbers and the code for the reasons you are applying for ITIN, which aren't always easy to find.

And I must add, the American Embassy in London (from my expericne) has dire customer service. The operator never puts you through to a human being, there is no contact email and I have had no responses to my letters from them.

Yes, if only it were that simple. For me, it has not and I am still trying to get my application in order..
19penguin72

Posts: 17
Registered: 05/03/12
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 16, 2012 1:23 PM   in response to: rachsh in response to: rachsh
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I'm sorry you had all those problems but that was due to you applying for an Individual Tax Identification Number rather than an Employers Identification Number.
For non Americans who are non-resident in the USA, a sole trader can get an EIN over the phone with no need for a birth certificate, passport or any other id.
The w8-ben form needs a tax id, and either will suffice.
kwoulfe

Posts: 230
Registered: 05/18/12
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 19, 2012 8:44 AM   in response to: 19penguin72 in response to: 19penguin72
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If you follow the very helpful instructions on 19penguin72's blog (Thank you by the way, that is what really helped me get mine sorted - you are a gem!) and phone up the number listed to get your EIN no. I did it last week and it only took around 10 mins and they give you your number then and there on the phone. All you need to do then is to download a copy of form W-8BEN fill it out with your EIN no. and send it off. I did one for both Kindle and Createspace, you have to complete one for each company who is paying you.
19penguin72

Posts: 17
Registered: 05/03/12
Re: W8-BEN form, what is it?
Posted: Jun 19, 2012 8:59 AM   in response to: kwoulfe in response to: kwoulfe
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kwoulfe - I am delighted that it helped you :-)

I think Amazon make it sound more complicated than it really needs to be.
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