Issue With FBA Shipment - EU VAT!


#1

We had a message saying our ability to send FBA shipments to Amazon had been revoked due to an issue with EU Tax regulations today. We like many others on here got ourselves banned incorrectly from Amazon.de and but the error message we got was for shipments sent to the UK.

The email said that to resolve the issue I needed to update VAT numbers for European market places and pointed me in the direction of Amazon VAT services. I am well aware of the need to get a German (and French) VAT number to be able to ship goods to those market places but what on earth has this got to do with our UK market.

I acknowledged the message and got the restriction removed but I have a horrible feeling we will see this message again when we send another shipment and next time I won’t have the option to just confirm I have read it. We have already lost our German sales and if we were to lose FBA UK as well then that would be game over !

Anyone else had the same message and any ideas on how to stop this happening again


#2

If you are using FBA then your stock has the potential to be in other Europe warehouses. You need VAT registration is FR, DE, IT, ES, PL & CZ. This is regardless of the warehouse you initially send them too.


#3

Why on earth would you need VAT registration if you are only sending to the UK?
You don’t even need UK registration until you hit the threshold.

The only potential it will have to being in other warehouses, is if you are selling on the other sites, with PAN EU, or directly storing stock in another country.


#4

Or if someone from another country purchases through Amazon.co.uk, they will return to a “local” Amazon warehouse, thus triggering VAT requirement.


#5

Only if you have the option enabled. :smile:

By default, they are not supposed to do that.


#6

It sounds like they have PAN EU enabled with opens a whole VAT can of worms.

TURN IT OFF NOW. Although that still will not remove you from your VAT liabilities :woman_facepalming:


#7

We are not Pan European and inventory is sent to UK only. Amazon have clarified that the email sent was misleading and they were referring to the request for French VAT registration as of end of Jan

What I still cannot get my head around is that a shipment sent to a UK fulfillment centre triggered the issue and resulted in our temporary ban from UK FBA centres. Obviously if we ship to the UK then only UK Vat is needed, Amazon have stated that they ‘made a note on our account’ but I am betting good money this will happen again :frowning:


#8

Amazon are clueless.

Before they were made jointly liable for VAT they couldn’t careless if you were properly VAT registered or not (hence all the Chinese VAT fraudsters). Since they are now liable, they seem to jump on everyone at the drop of a hat.

I keep getting emails on my US account saying I need to register for VAT, even though they have confirmed I don’t need to.

Regarding your own account, have you double checked you are not Pan European? A year or two back Amazon took it upon themselves to auto-enroll everyone whether they wanted it or not. You had to actively opt out to avoid it.

I can see many sellers now running into EU VAT issues because they either weren’t aware of this stupid move by Amazon, or were aware but forgot/didn’t know how to opt out.


#9

The exact same thing has happened to me. I get a message out of the blue that there is an issue with an FBA shipment I sent to Amazon in September last year.
When I click the ‘resolve issue’ button for the shipment in question I’m told that in order to send any more FBA stock to Amazon I need to resolve issues with my EU Tax settings.
Upon further investigation I discover that in order to send any further FBA stock to Amazon I am now required to submit VAT certificates for half a dozen European countries.
I’ve not got PAN Euro enabled, I don’t have any listings on any of the European marketplaces, I’m nowhere near the UK VAT threshold.
But seemingly because there is a slim chance a customer from Europe might buy one of my products from the UK marketplace and then return it, resulting in it being stored in an Amazon warehouse in Europe, I now have to go through the cost and hassle of applying for European VAT status across France, Germany etc.
It is UTTER MADNESS on Amazons part, and another example of their heavy handed approach to everything seller related.
I’ve only been selling on Amazon for around 18 months, but in that time I have been both amazed and alarmed at their constant tinkering and policy changing. It seems that not a week goes by without some goal post being shifted. I totally understand the need to remain within ever changing legal boundaries, but you would expect changes to be implemented by Amazon in a way that works with their seller community, not repeatedly pulling the rug out from under their feet.


#10

It’s actually not that slim of a chance that someone in the EU might buy something, then return it to their own country.
For example, people in Ireland tend to so shop on the UK site, so there is a fair chance that an item will be returned incorrectly.
Have you disabled the settings for returns to be held in any other country but the UK?
You also need to disable the global sales settings as this overrides that one.


#11

Eh what now?

I haven’t ‘disabled settings for returns to be held in any other country but the UK’, primarily because I didn’t even know this setting/option existed. I’ve just tried using Amazons wonderful ‘help’ system to find this option and am just getting an array of irrelevant information returned, most of which is trying to sell/promote Amazon global selling services I don’t want.

As far as I know my global sales settings are set to UK only. I’ve just gone to look where I used to be able to see my global sales settings but it seems Amazon have moved stuff around (again). Unless they’ve been changed without my consent then they should still be UK only.