eBay announced this week it would begin displaying UK VAT numbers on listings: “If you have previously provided us with a UK VAT number, this will now be automatically displayed on your listings, effective from 21 February 2018.”
It also advised sellers to check that the number they provided to eBay is valid by visiting its “Manage VAT numbers” page.
Value Added Tax, or VAT, is a tax charged on most supplies of goods or services in the European Union. eBay explains that VAT can affect sellers two ways:
– You may be required to charge VAT on the sales you make on eBay
– You may need to pay VAT on your eBay fees
European sellers compliant with VAT obligations have been frustrated with how marketplaces such as eBay and Amazon handle overseas sellers who do not register for VAT as required. As we wrote in 2014, some even accused marketplaces like eBay as being havens for Chinese tax-evading sellers and hurting British companies.
eBay UK recently advised sellers of their obligations and warned that it works with UK tax agency HMRC on preventing tax evasion. It also said it would take action against sellers who are non-compliant, “including selling blocks.”
It’s possible publishing VAT numbers in listings may help HMRC look for tax evaders.
SOURCE: eBay UK Announcement