eCommerce Blog / Get a Sales Tax ID

How to get a Resale License (Sales Tax ID)

Hey, would you like to pay tax that you don't actually need to pay?

I'm guessing your answer is a big, fat "Nope." No one does, which is why if you're going to get into the retail business, you need a reseller's permit (also called a resale license, reseller's license, resale certificate or reseller's certificate, sales tax permit or sales tax ID).

If you're a US-based seller, you don't need to pay sales tax out of your own pocket for the products you're reselling to others. Your customers will pay it when they buy the product. You'll collect the money and send it to the state on a routine schedule.

A reseller's license is your flag saying "I sell to others. I can buy wholesale products without paying sales tax because I pass the tax onto my customers." 

How Do I Get a Sales Tax ID/Reseller's License?

Half the trouble with signing up for a sales tax license is finding where to go!

To get started, you need to find your state tax department. For example, someone based in New York would go to the New York State Department of Taxation and Finance (either online, by phone or in person) and fill in the appropriate form.

You'll find that when you've made your way to the right website, most of the information and forms you need are just waiting for you. 

That's why I've got this nifty map to help you find your way faster:

Click on your state to find the right sales tax information for you,
and register for your license.




Sales Tax Applies
No Sales Tax



Find this useful? Spread the love: Share it. :)

Once you get your sales tax ID, the state will start sending you monthly/quarterly statements. In some cases, states will use your federal EIN as your sales tax ID. In some cases, they'll issue you a separate number. 

Sales Tax: A Brief Overview

Sales tax is a tax levied on all sales of physical goods to consumers within most states. Some states also charge sales tax for certain kinds of services.

Not all states charge sales tax: if you live in Delaware, Oregon, New Hampshire, Montana or Alaska, then sales tax either does not apply or applies only in certain circumstances. For sellers in any other state: yes, you do need to worry about sales tax!

You can find your state's sales tax rate here. It is important that you do this, because taxes vary significantly among the different states. For instance, some have one rate that applies state-wide, while in others, the rate varies between counties and cities.

Determining what state(s) you need to pay tax comes down to where you operate. A base of operations is called a "nexus." If you are dropshipping from home, you'll only be responsible for that state's sale tax because you only have one nexus. If you have a storage warehouse in another state, you have a nexus there, too. If you opt to ship goods via Fulfilled by Amazon, you technically have a nexus in whatever state(s) your goods are warehoused in.  

Note: In some states you also need to collect sales tax on shipping and handling.

You can learn more about sales tax here

A Bit of Extra Information for You

There are a few other things to consider when looking into the taxes you'll be responsible for as a seller. 

  • Reseller's Permits and Buying Wholesale 

    If you are a US citizen purchasing wholesale goods from a supplier within the US, then you will probably need a resale certificate or license from the state in which your business is located.

    A resale certificate or license enables you to purchase goods wholesale without paying sales tax. It also allows you to collect sales tax from your customers, the end consumer.

    Without a resale certificate, you will have to pay sales tax on the goods you buy wholesale and then also charge sales tax. In this case you can add the sales tax you paid as a deduction on your return, but it is much less complicated to just present your reseller's license when you buy.

    Most wholesalers will ask to see a sales tax ID or reseller's license before they will sell you the goods. This is because they are legally obliged to check whether you are able to collect sales tax from the end user.

  • Use Tax

    Another thing you may come across is something called "use tax." This tax is in place to discourage people from shopping in states with lower taxes than their own.

    Use tax means that if you purchase goods in another state, you owe tax equal to the amount you would normally have paid in your own state. It will also apply to you if you buy goods intended for resale and then end up keeping them for your own use.

    The good news is, if you are based in one state but ship to customers in another, you're not obligated to collect sales tax or deal with use tax at all. Just as you're responsible for paying the use tax if you get your supplies from out of state, your consumers are responsible for the use tax when they buy from you. 

    Obviously you could potentially get away without paying use tax because it works on an honor basis. However, should you be audited, use tax is something auditors like to hone in on. As a result, many new businesses get caught in the cross-hairs. Therefore it is wise to make sure that you pay it and keep the appropriate records.

  • Collecting Sales Tax on eBay or Your Website

    The process for collecting sales tax will differ depending on where you're selling.

    If you're selling on eBay, for example, you can learn how to collect sales tax on eBay here. The process basically looks like this:

    1. Go to "My eBay."
    2. Click the "Preferences" link from the left-hand navigation bar.
    3. Click "Show" in the "Payments from Buyers" section.
    4. In the "Use Sales Tax Table" section click "Edit."
    5. The "Sales Tax Table" page appears.
    6. Find the state you want to start charging sales tax in and put in the correct sales tax amount in the "Sales Tax Rate" field. You can also opt to charge sales tax on shipping and handling, if it's required.

If you're selling on your own online store, or if you're planning to in the future, things can get a little tricky if you're not careful!

The best thing to do in this case is hire an accountant, or use tax software such as Avalara to keep track of the sales tax you need to collect and pay. 

If you create your own online shop with SaleHoo Stores, setting up your sales tax collection is automated and easy.

  • Records to Keep

    You need to keep your resale certificate(s) on file as part of your business records. You must be able to match your sales records with the certificates for audit purposes.

  • Reporting Sales Tax

    How often you need to complete Sales and Use Tax reports will depend on your monthly sales turnover and the state you are working from.

It's very important you are sure to collect the correct amount of sales tax, as you will be held liable for the difference if you come up short.

Note: Trading Assistants do not need to collect or remit sales tax.

Related Posts


Comments (409)

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Amanda FayHersh on 11:33 24 Sep
I have looked everywhere on the internet for how you would get a sales tax I.D. and a resale permit. I cannot find anything but scams. I clicked on my state in the above map, but the website for oklahoma does not have information on obtaining a packet to apply for either one of them. I would Appriciate some help.
Melissa Johnson on 4:06 26 Sep
Hi, Amanda! Here is the link you need:

Hope this helps!
robert hart on 14:47 28 Sep
I am located in Canada. Must I pay tax.

Thank you
Melissa Johnson on 17:25 28 Sep
Hi, Robert!

You don't need to worry about orders placed in the U.S. if you are from Canada unless you have a stateside base of operations. However, you will be expected to pay Canadian sales tax. You can learn more about that here:
guy nadeau on 16:14 13 Oct
Hi Melissa.

I checked the site. But when they ask for what type of business what should I write?
Melissa Johnson on 23:27 13 Oct
Hi there, Guy!

I honestly can't tell you, because I don't know your business. I'm guessing it's probably retail? that's generally a broad term that covers lots of stuff.
Amanda FayHersh on 14:19 3 Oct
I had a look at the website that you directed me to and It is a way to register a business and the permits that you already have, but no information on how to get the permit that I need. I appriciate your help and patience.
Melissa Johnson on 16:42 4 Oct
Hi, Amanda! I think registering your business on the site will get you the permit. But I admit, I am not familiar with Oklahoma laws at all.

Otherwise, it appears from the link above that you can apply in person in Tulsa or Oklahoma City. The alternative is to contact an accountant or tax expert to help you figure out the next step.
Steve Awad on 18:12 8 Oct
Thanks for your help with everything Melissa Johnson - very helpful.

We have a business in Jersey City (an Urban Enterprise Zone that only charges 3.5% sales tax versus the NJ state wide rate of 7%) so we have a nexus in NJ. We sold $10,000 in scientific equipment to a company in Rockville, Maryland. So I simply charge the $10,000 and no additional tax? (6% tax rate in MD).

I only would charge tax if the customer is in NJ and would only have to charge 3.5% given we are in an Urban Enterprise Zone? is that correct?

Melissa Johnson on 23:42 13 Oct
Hi, Steve --

That's a big number, and I would hate to be wrong. Was it something you sold online? in person? Did they come to your location? A lot of businesses don't tend to just make large purchases online without some discussion and back and forth.

On in-state purchases, honestly can't say because I'm not familiar with the tax laws in your area. I've never heard of urban enterprise zones, so I don't know how they would work and whether state or local tax rates take precedence.

I strongly, strongly recommend checking with an accountant or tax expert just to make sure you're in compliance and doing things correctly. =)
MANUEL on 23:30 9 Oct
Hello! I want to start my online business but I live in Spain, I would have to get me a license to sell in the United States?
Melissa Johnson on 23:45 13 Oct
Hi, Manuel.

No license required to sell online in the U.S., but you might have to register with the Spanish government. I don't know how taxes work for businesses in Spain.

If you plan to import to the U.S. or buy wholesale and store goods in the U.S. in your own warehouse space, you'll have to register your business and pay taxes.

Hope that helps!
Ran Golan on 22:12 10 Oct
I have a company in the Netherlands
I am not a US citizen
do I need a Sales Tax ID ?
and if yes how do I do that ?

thanks in advance
Melissa Johnson on 23:46 13 Oct
You only need a sales tax ID if you have an office/warehouse/official presence in the U.S. That includes importing and storing goods. If you're just selling online from overseas, you don't need to worry about it.

Melissa Johnson on 23:49 13 Oct
If you will have a presence in the U.S., you need to register in the state where you're based. Not all states collect sales tax, either. It's hard to say without more details

Your best bet is always to talk to a tax expert or accountant.
guy nadeau on 16:10 13 Oct
Hi Melissa. I'm from Canada -- more specifically New Brunswick -- anbd I've been wondering about that tax thing ever since I have made my first affiliate commission back in 2011. I didn't make enough in my opinion since then to bother with, but eventually if I want to make a business out of this I need to look at this a little bit closer.

I try to look through the internet to my local tax department and I emailed them the question. I now wait to see if they gonna answer me and how. I asked them what forms should I fill s a reseller and an affiliate.

Do you have an idea where I should go if I don't get any answer?
Melissa Johnson on 23:51 13 Oct
Talk to an accountant about it, or another qualified tax expert. They can answer your questions and often help you file the forms you need to scale your business.
on 18:47 16 Oct

I started my own business. I am working at my home. I received my business license and have recently gotten my EIN#. Now like some of the others stated i need my resale certificate. I clicked on my state of KY above and it did take me to the dept of revenue. I clicked on resale certificate and it took me to the certificate, but there's not really anywhere for me to put my information or does it tell me where i send or email the paper once i fill it out.. could you please help me.. Thank You!
Melissa Johnson on 16:45 19 Oct
Hi, Toni --

Frankly, I don't have all the answers.

You might be able to submit an application through the One Stop portal:

Otherwise, these are the links I have:

Your best bets are to call the tax office directly, or to talk to an accountant. Not only will they be able to help you straighten out the issue, but they'll also help you figure out what records you need to keep for filing taxes.

I hope this helps!
Twana Samal on 22:58 19 Oct
I live in Iraq and want to buy wholesale merchandise online from the US and resell them in Iraq. The Wholesale companies require always reseller certificate or if I plan on shipping to the USA prior to my country and would like to register with the US address of a shipping partner that I utilize they will need a letter from My Shipping Company that has the following requirements:
Document is on shipping company's letterhead.
Document indicates I am a current customer.
Document lists the USA address I am permitted to use for my shipping needs.
Document is signed and dated.
Could you give me some information about some shipping companies that can provide me the above mentioned documents?
Many thanks for considering my request.
Melissa Johnson on 15:44 25 Oct
Hi, Twana!

I'm afraid I don't have any specific recommendations for shipping companies.However, you can ask in our forums! Other members may have suggestions for shipping companies to use based on their own experiences:

Good luck!
Mac on 1:28 20 Oct

If I use a Resell Certificate to buy goods here in the states and sell those goods in another country then do I have to report the sales to the Us gov afterwards or it does not apply to the sales took place in different country ?

Also, can I use a foreign resale certificate to get exempt from state sales tax or it has to be from one of the 50 states ?

Would really appreciate if anyone inform me about this.
Melissa Johnson on 16:24 25 Oct
Hi, Mac!

There are a lot of variables to consider here, so I can't really say anything with certainty. I did some digging and found this:

"In general, if a sale is made to a company for export outside of the United States, it is not subject to sales tax. However, in order for this exemption to apply, delivery must not be made to the purchaser within the United States. The seller must deliver the property either directly outside the US or to a qualified export agent."

Generally you only need to pay and report sales where the sales take place. Some wholesalers and suppliers will accept international certificates, too. So it depends on whether you want to set up an actual presence within the US, or just let an export agent/customs broker handle the matter. Just letting a customs broker act for you seems like it will be the simplest option.

If you have other questions, you can always ask on our forum. Some of the international sellers there might have answers for you!
Carlos on 11:20 21 Oct
Good morning.

My name is Carlos and few weeks ago I decided to register a business entity in the state of Delaware.

I'm still in the process of getting all the paperwork back from the state filling but I'd like to ask something in regards to a blog post here:

I decided to start an ecommerce business and this is why I decided to register a business in the US. I am physically located in Romania (Europe) and ofen I am asked for a resale certificate from the suppliers I am working with.

Could you please be so kind to let me know how do I request this certificate? I read your post in the website but I believe it only applies to US citizens. What is the process for foreign people registering in US as a business?

The reason I ask is because of this statement:

"The physical location of your business is what determines where you apply for the resale certificate"

What happens if my business is not physically located anywhere? I mean, I use a registered agent which I pay annually but other than that, my business is online and I do not have headquarters in USA.

Do I qualify to get a resale certificate?

Looking forward for your reply, thank you.

Best Regards,

Melissa Johnson on 17:30 25 Oct
Hi, Carlos --

Delaware doesn't collect sales tax, so it doesn't provide resale permits as far as I can tell. You should be able to provide your business license to most retailers as a substitute, but I would double check with an accountant or other tax expert just to be sure. Frankly, I'm not finding much helpful information online.

Registering in the US isn't hard. Generally it's handled by individual states (in your case Delaware). It looks like you're required to get a federal EIN as part of the Delaware registration process so I think that's all you need.

If you have more questions, I recommend checking out our forum. Some of the other sellers might have more specific advice:
Holly on 23:19 21 Oct
I am a small handcraft business located in Kodiak Alaska. I have a business license, but I have searched everywhere for a resale permit and I can't find anything about it. According to the website for Alaska, each municipality is in charge of a resale permit. Where we live does not have one applicable. Do I submit only my business license and explain my situation? Or should I pop for a resale certificate in another municipality even though I don't conduct business there?
Melissa Johnson on 16:07 25 Oct
Hi, Holly --

I would stick to the business license, I think. Alaska doesn't have a sales tax imposed, except for some municipalities. A quick Google search suggests that Kodiak has a sales tax, but you said it doesn't issue resale permits. I'm also not finding much online that explains it.

Honestly, I would talk to an accountant about it. They should be able to get you squared away.
Nick on 15:22 30 Oct
Hi there...
I hope you can help. I sell on Amazon and was just approved to sell a huge line of products from a company. Problem is the company says I need to have a tax certificate for each state. The company is located and ships from Texas and I am in WA state. Wouldnt I just need my resale for WA and a tax certificate for Texas since that would be considered a nexus? Really hope you can help.
Melissa Johnson on 20:31 30 Oct
Hi, Nick!

I'm not sure honestly.The resale certificate for WA is essential because it's your home base. I'm not sure you'll have a nexus in TX given the circumstances you've described. However, if you plan to use Fulfillment by Amazon, I believe you'll be responsible for taxes in whatever state you warehouse the products in -- that may be what your supplier is referring to. It's best to ask them for clarification, though.
Nadia on 20:42 1 Nov
Hello! I still don't know if I get it.
I live in Brazil. I want to sell on Amazon US from US dropshippers as an individual (I am not a company). In other words: want to do business only in US, nothing to do with Brazil, despite the fact that I live here. Do I have to collect taxes? Do I have to have an US bank account to receive my money on

Thank you so much!!!
Melissa Johnson on 16:29 3 Nov
Hi, Nadia!

I have no idea what the tax implications are in Brazil. However, here's a really great link about what you need to sell on the US Amazon site when you're outside the country.

Hope this helps!
lemyr g silva on 21:45 31 Jul
Hello, Nadia! I'm pretty much in the exact same situation as you. I'm also from Brazil(Campo Grande-MS). If you would like to talk about this so we can learn together, I guess it would be awesome. Feel free to contact me at . Abraço!
Mike on 19:34 12 Dec
I recently purchased a furniture based import business based in California.
I want transfer the resale license to Montana as I live there.

I buy product from Africa at wholesale, ship it to the U.S. and sell it.

My issues are that I am not yet a U.S citizen; am currently in California for a few months, but reside in Montana and don't know how to transfer the resale license with regards to crossing states and Montana having no sales tax.

What do I do and how long does the process take?

Any information would be greatly appreciated.

Thank You
Melissa Johnson on 22:02 14 Dec
Hi, Mike!

In this case I highly, highly recommend that you talk to an accountant or other tax expert, one who's based in Montana. They'll know what paperwork you need to file to change your business' address, etc. Since Montana doesn't have sales tax there shouldn't be as much work to do, but it's definitely best if you talk to a licensed expert.
Craig Simms on 13:31 15 Dec
Hi Melissa,

Here is my situation, I am Canadian living in Canada. I own a US C-Corp registered in Delaware. The company's mailing address is in NY and the fulfillment company I use is in Michigan. I am looking to add a new US supplier but they require a state resale tax certificate. My question is what state in your opinion would apply, I was under the impression Michigan was my greater presence as actual physical work is being performed there..

Regards and thank you in advance.
Melissa Johnson on 1:09 21 Dec
Your business is headquartered in Delaware, which is tax exempt: So you should let the supplier know that and provide the appropriate documents.

If you're paying taxes to the state of Michigan, you should be able to get the required documentation from MI, but if you're not obligated to pay tax there, you shouldn't have to show a resale tax certificate at all.
Rustam uktamov on 0:32 28 Dec
hi there. I have registered as a sole proprietorship in state Virginia. I have FEIN too. The certificate to be filled out from the supplier asks for "certificate registration number". Any idea where can I get that number? My business account with does not show me such a number. Thanks!
Melissa Johnson on 20:07 31 Dec
It looks like you need form ST-4 -- if you don't have that, you'll need to apply for one:
Mohamed Diab on 15:16 31 Dec
So, please if anybody could help i'll be grateful.
I'm not a U.S citizen but i'm Egyptian, and i would like to know if there any possibility for creating a ST ID to be able running my first contacts with suppliers who requested sales tax ID, i'm only a drop shipper / re seller on ebay & amazon and didn't create my own web store yet.
So any help will be appreciated on this please.

Melissa Johnson on 20:16 31 Dec
Since you're based abroad, the only way to get a sales tax ID would be to incorporate your business in the U.S. and then file the necessary paperwork in the state where you incorporate. I think you'll also need a registered agent. Of course, doing so will obligate you to pay taxes in the U.S., but I'm not sure what the eligibility requirements are for creating a business in the U.S. It's something to discuss with a tax professional -- they can advise you best.

If you tell your suppliers you're based internationally, they may just ask for the equivalent documentation for your home country. Your best bet is just to ask if they work with international clients, because if they do, it'll save you the trouble of having to incorporate.
Roxy on 4:17 4 Jan
Good night, I am living in Jamaica. Would I be able to sign up successfully with Salehoo?
Melissa Johnson on 22:21 8 Jan
Hi, Roxy!

Yes, you should be able to register.
NOREEN DUNN on 18:18 5 Jan
Hi! I'm Reenie from NY. I have a valid business and NY Sales TaxCerificate of Authority. I buy and sell auction items on Ebay. I am going to auctions in Florida soon and would like to know if I can present my NYS certificate for tax exemption. I did this last year, one auction house was good with it. another was not. I have yet to find proper information in regards to the legality. Florida I believe has a 6% sales tax rate and our county here in NY is at 8%.

Thanks in advance for any information!
Melissa Johnson on 22:38 8 Jan
Hi, Reenie!

I've done a bit of digging and I haven't actually found an answer to your question. Honestly, it may be something that varies from one auctionhouse to another. If you have any questions, though, you might actually try contacting the Florida Department of Revenue:
Frinze Delis on 7:33 11 Jan
Hi Salehoo staff. Suppliers were all asking for resellers tax id and I am based in Canada. As ive read the thread here, I cant find the answers how, even in google. Can you give me a name of member here in salehoo that is based in Canada that does dropshipping? So that I can ask him/her on how he get his business license? Thanks a lot salehoo
Melissa Johnson on 20:05 11 Jan
In most cases, providing proof of your business' registration in Canada will be sufficient.

If you want a US-based reseller's tax ID, you'll first have to incorporate within a US state first, which means filing the paperwork, paying fees, and designating a registered agent.

If you're looking for another member who is also dropshipping from Canada, i think the best way for you to do so is to check out our forum:

You can also reach our support team at

Hope this helps!
Michelle Williams on 9:04 12 Jan
I'm trying to figure out if its worth it. I want to sell on Amazon and eBay. Mostly dropshipping but I would like to sell a few items on my online store. I need a resellers license to buy a few items from wholesallers, any suggestions?
Melissa Johnson on 17:21 14 Jan
I suppose it depends on what you're interested in selling! We generally recommend that our members pick a specific niche and stick to it rather than having a general mish-mash of products.

Having your own store is a good counterbalance to selling on Amazon and eBay. the best part is you don't pay the same sort of seller's fees; just whatever payment processing service you use.
Hamid on 1:38 16 Jan
My name is Hamid
i am international businessman from Libya. I am trying to buy shipping container from US, but the require business tax id and business registration. so my question is How Do I Get a Tax ID and business registration ?
Thank you
Melissa Johnson on 17:04 18 Jan
hi, Hamid!

In some cases you can provide proof of your business' registration in your home country as equivalent. However, commerce in the U.S. is regulated by individual states. So you would have to go through the steps to incorporate in the state of your choice (Delaware and Nevada are popular options, though you can choose any state) and file the appropriate paperwork to get the tax ID and any other documentation. You can get assistance with that from an attorney or an accountant, typically -- I would look for someone who has a background in international business. Consulting an expert is just the best way to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Maria Requena on 20:22 24 Jan
Hi I am based in Mexico, what happens if I sell to US customers through my website, but by from US suppliers, do I need to register to have a Tax ID , even though I pay taxes in my country?
Melissa Johnson on 17:54 26 Jan
You'd only need a tax ID if you were to incorporate in the U.S. You should check with suppliers -- many of them will be happy to work with you as long as you provide proof of your registration in Mexico.
Osama on 10:12 25 Jan
I am a digital marketing Specialist. Now looking to start my Own E commerce business with the help of drop shippers. My target market is US. Need some guideline how to start my business & do i need to register my company in US & how to get a re-seller certificate as i am a non us citizen.

Melissa Johnson on 18:01 26 Jan
Hi, Osama!

Here's a really good, comprehensive starter guide:

To register your company in the U.S., you'll have to pick a state and incorporate there, then file the necessary paperwork to get set up to pay taxes, get a reseller's permit, etc. However, you don't necessarily need to do all that -- you can still dropship from abroad. Some U.S. suppliers will be happy to work with you as long as you provide equivalent proof of business.
Parasuram Kappati on 16:00 25 Jan
Hi I have a registered LLC Delaware do I need MI registration to sell products ON LINE from MI,

Shall I need import licence to import steel products from India in to US.
Melissa Johnson on 18:10 26 Jan
Hi there!

I assume you're based in Michigan? I believe that would create a nexus, which might obligate you to pay taxes in Michigan.

Importing any sort of product in bulk will require you to go through customs; however, since steel is generally a raw material it'll be a bit different than retail goods.

Your best bet is to talk to an accountant or other tax expert, plus a customs broker, to figure out the logistics.

Hope that helps!
sal on 4:58 30 Jan
hi am am trying to start and online busniess i and looking on the new york site and can not find a section that says any thing about a resale license would you be able to help.
thank you
Melissa Johnson on 20:11 3 Feb
Hi, Sal!

I'm not familiar with how New York state tax law works. However, I think this might be a good starting place:

It appears that most businesses are responsible for issuing their own exemption certificates. However, your best bet is probably to talk to an accountant or other tax expert to be sure.

Hope that helps!
nghia on 6:05 1 Feb

If i have a re-seller permit, if i were to buy stuff like at walmart or some other retail store, do i have to pay sales tax on it? If i don't, how does it work with individual retailers if i were to order from them online? I know when i go to a wholesaler, they ask for my verification.
Melissa Johnson on 20:14 3 Feb
You shouldn't have to pay sales tax, no. you'll just have to keep your permit on you to show. Most places won't accept a photograph of it as proof. I don't know how it works online because every store is different, but if you contact site support I bet they can tell you. I know Amazon allows you to set up tax exemption when you buy online.
Meet Patel on 11:25 10 Feb
Hello there,

We are an online marketplace that wish to re-sell products sold via different companies. Our company is incorporated in DE but is operated from abroad. Since DE does not require any certificates to re-sell, we don't have to get a re-sell permit there.

My question is I have a virtual mailbox in CA ( - I am guessing this means I have nexus in that state. Do I have to get a re-seller permit in CA?
Melissa Johnson on 20:42 14 Feb
I don't know that you'll need a reseller permit since it sounds like you're sourcing online. Depends on what your suppliers want to see.

However, you may be liable for taxes in California, at least based on this: I don't know how you use your mailbox.

I suggest talking to an accountant or attorney just to make sure. They can guide you through the process.
Matthew Miner on 17:20 15 Feb

I have an EIN and was wondering if there is anything I am missing to cover myself for taxes and sales. I plan to dropship and sell strictly online. I am running my business out of Mass.

Melissa Johnson on 17:29 17 Feb
Hi, Matthew!

Here's a link that may be of some help:

Definitely plan on collecting sales tax for any sales within MA. However, your best bet is to talk to an accountant. They know the tax laws better than anyone.
Toni Patterson on 20:40 16 Feb
I am trying to get my wholesale license or seller's license in ga. Now once i get my license can i go to new york to buy items with my ga wholesale license or sellers license?
Melissa Johnson on 17:30 17 Feb
You should be able to, yes, but you might want to check with the individual suppliers.
adriana on 23:28 22 Feb
Hi. I'm from mexico and would start selling products from a Facebook page . I wonder who would have to pay tax on my country and us . if you only sell for facebook and not on a website , they would pay taxes ?
Melissa Johnson on 4:47 24 Feb
Hi, Adriana!

Sadly, there are too many variables in your question for me to tell you what to do. Are you selling arts and crafts? Dropshipping? Where are your buyers coming from?

Generally, no matter where you're selling, if you make enough that it can be considered a "business" (In the U.S., the threshold is about $600 annually), you're going to have to pay taxes. If you're based in Mexico, that's where you'll pay taxes unless you actually incorporate and establish a presence in the U.S.

An accountant is the best person to advise you. They'll know the ins and outs of what to do.

Hope that helps a little, at least!
Amos Ahchong on 11:45 7 Apr
HI I got a bit confused with all the tax info, I just wanted to clarify, so if I sell on say Ebay do I have to have a sales tax id? As I wanted to start small just things from home. Your advice will be much appreciated as I really want to do things right and branch out as I have been selling just on trademe and bidbud.

Thank you
Melissa Johnson on 16:19 18 Apr
Hi, Amos!

If you're not based in the US (no premises, no nexus, no incorporation) you're not obligated to get a sales tax ID. Instead, you're subject to the laws of your country, which will obviously vary.

In the US, you can make somewhere around $600 in income and have it be considered "hobby" income. You don't have to report it and it's not considered a business. I don't know if the same applies to New Zealand -- I would check with an accountant. They're the best qualified to give you advice on the matter.

Hope that helps somewhat!
Amos Ahchong on 12:29 16 Apr
Hi Do we in New Zealand have to pay this set up and ID.

Thank you
Manuela Marie Basilio on 22:25 16 May

I am based in New York but not a US resident. I am on an O1 visa and would like to start doing dropshipping as an extra source of income. I am wondering if I can apply for a sales tax ID or if I am even allowed to do this business. Thank you!
Melissa Johnson on 15:31 25 May
Hi, Manuela!

Honestly, I don't know. I am not an expert in immigration law. It looks like with an O1 visa you may be able to, but you're best off contacting a lawyer or an accountant to verify, especially because commerce is generally regulated by the state, not the federal government. I know that under about $600 is considered "hobby" income and generally doesn't need to be reported, but it sounds like you're looking for a bit more than that.
Robin B on 13:57 20 May
I have a question. I am planning to start selling on ebay. These will be hand made items that I will be purchasing and reselling. I have never seen anyone collect tax on ebay (certainly I've never paid any). How does that work exactly?
Melissa Johnson on 13:57 20 May
Hi, Robin!

eBay is a very different creature than Amazon, since most eBay sellers are independents and eBay doesn't sell directly or offer warehousing services for sellers. Sales tax law varies according to what state you are based in, further complicating the matter.

You can enable sales tax on eBay (see here: )

However, you may not need to, depending on your state's individual laws. (Generally when you're selling to people in another state you don't have to charge sales tax.) It's also possible that some sellers just build the cost of sales tax into the price of the item.

I would talk to an accountant about the matter and figure out what you need to do.
yalloak on 0:34 24 Jun
Hi Gina, I am based in Australia but wish to only list products on the US eBay platform for sale to US residents. What is the situation regarding Tax and/or any licencing requirements to become a reseller?
Melissa Johnson on 21:46 24 Jun
If you're outside the US, you don't need to worry about paying tax in the US unless you choose to incorporate there (doesn't sound like that's what you're interested in). Otherwise, all you have to worry about is meeting eBay's requirements and Australia's tax laws. Specific dropshipping companies might want to see proof of business, but that isn't true of all companies. I would check with an accountant about what you need tax-wise in Australia.

Good luck!
Hector Ariel Febles Benitez on 22:14 24 Jun
Hi Gina, Im from Dominican Republic, butt plan to sell good in the USA What do I need to do Tax wise??
Melissa Johnson on 17:50 8 Aug
Hi, Hector!

Unless you incorporate in a US state or establish a base of operations in the US, you aren't obligated to deal with taxes here, just your home country.

Hope that helps!
daniel popa on 11:15 20 Aug
not that i am an expert in taxation ....but this sounds wrong....if one sells a product on usa ebay to an usa citizen in the state of say california....then should not the seller charge tax and pass it to the gov of california since the transaction is within usa and the buyer is based in california???
Melissa Johnson on 17:01 22 Aug
eCommerce falls into a bit of a nebulous area just by virtue of being a global thing. It depends entirely on the seller's location.

If you have a base of operations in the US (a "nexus," technically), you're liable for taxes in the state where your nexus is located. But if you're based abroad and have no physical presence in the US (such as dropshipping from a foreign country), you're not. However, any goods you ship from a foreign country into the US might be subject to customs duties, which are the responsibility of the buyer. If they don't pay, the item is sent back.
Travis Brian Olson on 5:45 27 Aug
Hi Melissa quick question :).

What exactly are all the things I will need to register for If I want to drop ship on amazon and ebay?

I could not find a solid answer on this . I live in Marietta Georgia of the United States.

Do I need a re seller permit and a business license? or only a reseller permit? Is there a difference between a sellers permit and a resellers permit? Also do I need an LLC? what about DBA?

I'm so confused on this and not sure exactly what I need to register for to drop shipping online. Can you help clear this up?
Also do you have a site you recommend to register through the internet to get registered quickly without the hassle?
Melissa Johnson on 5:12 31 Aug
Hi, Travis!

First of all: I'm not an accountant or a lawyer. I can give you some information, but if you want to be 100% sure you're compliant with state law, I highly recommend talking to an accountant.

When you start your business, by default you are considered a sole proprietorship. If you choose to incorporate as an LLC, you get additional legal protection for you and your business, but you'll have to file your taxes differently and pay to register. You don't /have/ to become an LLC right away, but as you start making more money, it could be worthwhile.

Here's what I've learned: Sellers permits, resellers permits, etc., tend to go by many names and sometimes the terminology gets confusing because there's not a lot of consistency. Basically, you need to tell the state that you are a business and get a permit to collect sales tax. The technical name for this permit, in George, is the "Sales and Use Tax Certificate of Registration." Depending on where you're getting supply from, you may also want to get a certificate that you can show to other retailers/suppliers to show that you are exempt from playing sales tax on those purchases. Some suppliers require it.

To apply for your Sales and Use Tax certifiicate, here's a resource:

You may also need to register with your city or county for business license, per this: I don't know how that applies to eCommerce businesses. It's a good question to ask an accountant. =)

A DBA is just "doing business as." I honestly don't know if you'll need one. Here is a bit more info though:

I hope this helps!
Manish Patel on 11:31 18 Sep
I am in India and going to use drop ship facility of a company in New York State,

so as non citizen of USA how can i have resale certificate?
is it compulsory to have resale certificate?

please guide me
Thank you
Melissa Johnson on 20:08 19 Sep
Hi, Manish!

You shouldn't need a resale certificate unless you do something that would create a nexus -- incorporating, importing to the US, etc. If you are just dropshipping, that shouldn't be required.

However, I am not familiar at all with India's laws regarding eCommerce and taxes for businesses. Even if you're not responsible for collecting tax in the US, you are still responsible for making sure you're covered in your home country.

You'll also want to find out what documentation your supplier might require.

Hope this helps!
Rex on 15:11 30 Sep
Hi Melissa,

So from what I understand the point of a resale certificate is to not have to pay sales tax on items that you mean to resell. However, what happens if you buy something using your sales tax ID and don't pay sales tax, but then don't resell it? What happens if you don't sell anything the entire year?

Also, are there any fees that may result from getting a Resale certificate?

Alejandro Almaguer Cardenas on 22:42 10 Jan
if im in mexico, will i need a reseller licence?
Franklin Cerrato on 3:25 19 Jan
I don't live in the United States. How can I go about this?
It seems most of the wholesalers, at least the trustworthy ones, need this number to do business. Plus I'm new to this so I really didn't even think I needed a "business identification Number" so, is there a solution for international sellers?
(I don't even have my own online store)
Justin Golschneider on 15:33 1 Feb
Hi Franklin! If you don't live in the U.S., you'll want whatever sales tax ID your country uses. For example, if you live in the E.U., you'd want a VAT number.
Diva Mangal on 19:46 22 Feb
Hello Melissa, I just signed up, and I am located in Alberta Canada, if I wanted to do dropshipping, am I required a Tax ID here in Canada? I am a little bit confused, do you mind explaining? thanks
Devin Corbett on 16:58 16 May
Same Question.

Applications to work with drop-shippers require that I fill out the feild for re-seller certificate, as a Canadian citizen I don't have a reseller certificate. How do I get one, or what can I put it its place? Without something in that section I can't submit applications / be considered by companies / etc.
Justin Golschneider on 12:11 18 May
Hi Devin and Diva! I would register for GST/HST if it applies to your location:

That ought to do the trick. You can also contact our support team to look into this further--maybe we could even get a new article written about it. :-)
onetalldwarf on 0:44 1 Aug 2017
I live in Australia and want to deal with suppliers/dropshippers/wholesalers within the US to sell on Amazon and eBay etc.
I have applied to several US suppliers and some I've not had a reply...
it's most likely because I don't have the required licence?

What will I need to do from Australia (in my case) regarding a resellers certificate?
Please help.
Justin Golschneider on 18:04 1 Aug 2017
Hello! It's more likely that they wanted to see an EIN if you don't have one yet. But, here's a helpful article on registering for sales tax when selling from another country:
Linda L. Hodge on 4:16 8 Aug 2017
I reside in Southern California. Currently there is a crazy trend that has the women 30 years to 50 years of age running from store to store to find a specific pottery piece by a specific upcoming artist. I want to purchase these pieces in bulk and resell these charming pieces across the United States.
I don't have a resale license, certificate, or the other. I'm just getting started but need to get moving because time is money.
Any thoughts?
Thank you,

Justin Golschneider on 13:47 8 Aug 2017
Hi Linda! Generally, the fastest option is to go to your local town hall and ask what you'll need. They should be able to set you up with everything necessary to purchase wholesale and sell from your house or locally operated business, including licenses and information on any state and local taxes that may apply.
Mark C. on 2:48 23 Aug 2017
Hi, I live in the state of Georgia and I'm interested in becoming a wholesale distributor. My customer base would be overseas and the sales would be conducted over the phone and via email. The majority of them have freight forwarders that I'd send the products to or they'd pick up from me, and then in turn ship to my customer. What if any licenses would I need to apply for? Any help would be greatly appreciated.
Justin Golschneider on 14:07 23 Aug 2017
Hi Mark! I would start with a Georgia sales tax permit:

You will need this to prove to your suppliers that you are reselling the goods and not just trying to buy in bulk while dodging sales tax. You will also need it to charge sales tax to any consumers you sell directly to in Georgia, though you won't need to charge any licensed retailers.

I'd ask if you need anything else at your local town hall. Happy selling!
Nafis on 8:06 27 Aug 2017
I live in Bangladesh. And I want to drop ship from China to USA. So do I need to pay any sale tax..? Please answer.. It will help me a lot.
Thank you
Justin Golschneider on 17:26 28 Aug 2017
Hi Nafis! If neither you nor your suppliers have any offices or warehouses in the U.S., my understanding is that you would not need to charge or pay U.S. sales tax. You'd only have to deal with customs.
Arifah radhiah on 22:47 4 Sep 2017
Hi, I am not a USA citizen and already got my EIN number. However my supplier ask for a copy of my resale certificate if I want to buy from them. What should I do as I only have the EIN number.
Justin Golschneider on 12:59 5 Sep 2017
Hi Arifah! If you do not have any business locations or sales tax nexuses (like those created by using Amazon FBA) in the U.S. and otherwise do not have to pay sales tax, then I would explain the situation to them—sales tax should apply neither to your sales nor to their sales to you, so a certificate is not needed.

However, if you have to collect and remit sales tax in any state, then you should register for a reseller's certificate before moving forward with supplier negotiations.
Chau Nguyen on 23:26 10 Sep 2017
Hi Gina,

I live in Montana and there's no sales tax here. I was told by the MT Department of Revenue that MT doesn't have a resale certificate. How do I purchase my supply at wholesale price without this certificate? I'm a jewelry designer and maker. Thanks for your help!
Justin Golschneider on 16:17 11 Sep 2017
Hi Chau! If you plan on selling directly from your home and/or other Montana locations, then simply tell them that a reseller certificate is not applicable to you because there is no sales tax in Montana. However, if you're planning on selling through FBA or have locations in other states, then you will need sales tax IDs for all applicable states. In that case, you can sign up for those first so you have something to show.


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