Which Tax Form For Non US Affiliates?

by 32 comments
I got accepted into EWA Private Network, and I need to download and submit a tax form, but I'm not sure which. It's one of these, but I'm not exactly sure which:-

Form W-8BEN
Form W-8ECI
Form W-8EXP
Form W-8IMY

Any help much appreciated
#ad networks #affiliates #form #tax
  • Profile picture of the author JenaBloosky
    w-8ben.. here's a link to a site where you can print it off. http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fw8ben.pdf

    Hope that helps!
    • Profile picture of the author Kay King
      There no reason to print an IRS form as that applies only to US residents.

      Just ask if you are required to submit any tax info for your country.
  • Profile picture of the author ChrisBa
    W8-BEN is what I've always used, however i'm not sure if it's the same for all countries/circumstances
  • Profile picture of the author alliednetw
    What of countries where tax is not paid?What should the applicant do?
  • Profile picture of the author StefanieBloosky
    Contact your AM they can tell you whether or not they need a form from you and if they do, which one they need
  • Profile picture of the author affgal4ever
    I know out of country networks don't require a form from americans, however, many american based networks require a w8 from out of state affiliates
    • Profile picture of the author kylefjerm
      You don't need to fill out any tax forms.
      Here is a qoute from another forum....

      Sorry to bring up an old thread, but this is quite important for non-US affiliates who are needlessly filling out IRS tax forms.

      The W8BEN form is only required to be filled out for US SOURCED income. Now "US Sourced" doesn't mean where the person writing the check is, it means where the work was done by the PAYEE.

      The OECD (of which the USA is a member of) put it's head together many years ago and determined that if you OWN a webserver in a country, then the websites you have on that server are producing income SOURCED in that country. If you merely RENT a webserver in a country, the websites on it are producing FOREIGN SOURCED income.

      FOREIGN SOURCED income is NOT subject to tax in the USA and does NOT require form W8BEN to be filled out - W8BEN is for foreigners to claim exemption from withholding tax on US SOURCED INCOME for tax treaty obligations.

      The instructions for W8BEN are clear:

      "Who must file. You must give Form W-8BEN to the withholding agent or payer if you are a foreign person and you are the beneficial owner of an amount SUBJECT TO WITHHOLDING."

      As I said previously, FOREIGN SOURCED INCOME IS NOT SUBJECT TO WITHHOLDING.

      All that is required is that the foreign affiliate CERTIFIES they do not have any US-SOURCED income and are not a US Taxpayer, etc.

      Google has it SPOT ON, on their Adsense tax information page:

      google.com/adsense/taxinfo

      (quoting)

      ********

      Non U.S. Business (No U.S. Activities )

      United States (U.S.) Activities involve having employees or owning equipment in the U.S. that are involved in any way with revenue earned through the AdSense programme. This includes, but is not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the U.S., or having employees in the U.S. who are involved in either:

      * setting up a web server, hosting service, or website
      * developing content for your website
      * marketing to create a user base for your site
      * telephone support for your site
      * buying products for your site
      * maintaining your site

      Generally, utilizing an unrelated third-party U.S. web hosting service to host your web pages, renting web servers that are located in the U.S. from an unrelated third party, or having your payment sent to a U.S. Post Office Box or mail forwarding address, do not of themselves constitute U.S. Activities.

      If you do not have U.S. Activities, you will be asked to agree to a statement to that effect. No tax forms are required in this instance.

      *********

      That's it in a nutshell.

      Commission Junction, and other merchants are doing a DISSERVICE to their foreign affiliates by requiring them to fill out forms that are not required, and making these people think they need to put themselves in the US tax system.

      Foreign affiliates need to stand up and say "hey! enough's enough!".
  • Profile picture of the author AidenChong
    Originally Posted by Liam Hamer View Post

    I got accepted into EWA Private Network, and I need to download and submit a tax form, but I'm not sure which. It's one of these, but I'm not exactly sure which:-

    Form W-8BEN
    Form W-8ECI
    Form W-8EXP
    Form W-8IMY

    Any help much appreciated
    Hey mate

    I joined EWA too since January, made some 4 figure money with them

    I remembered I filled out the Form W-8BEN and everything went well after that. Anyway, I'm an Asian.
  • Profile picture of the author adsquare
    As many others said, it's the w-8ben

    Jared
    • Profile picture of the author Boris_yo
      Generally, utilizing an unrelated third-party U.S. web hosting service to host your web pages, renting web servers that are located in the U.S. from an unrelated third party, or having your payment sent to a U.S. Post Office Box or mail forwarding address, do not of themselves constitute U.S. Activities.

      If you do not have U.S. Activities, you will be asked to agree to a statement to that effect. No tax forms are required in this instance.
      What "unrelated third-party" means?

      I am international content publisher from Israel and i have HostGator hosting account in USA. Is it third-party or what? Do i need to pay taxes or not?
  • Profile picture of the author Filter
    Technically, I don't think you have to fill it out. Not all networks ask for it for this reason.

    But if they do ask for tax forms, just fill it in. As has been said above, fill out a W8-BEN. Takes 2 minutes. Here's a link to a sample of how to fill it in. This is for an Australian resident but you get the idea....

    http://i381.photobucket.com/albums/o...ben-sample.jpg

    Cheers
  • Profile picture of the author KC-Coop
    Yep - it's the W-8BEN.
  • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
    Lots of confusion and misinformation in this thread.

    Some foreign affiliates must submit a w-8ben but NOT all.

    Let me try and help clarify this for you:

    Those with NO US activities are not required to. However, you need to understand what US activities means. In a nut shell any affiliate who operates business with a location in the US or who has employees in the US or who owns equipment in the US has US activities.

    Those are they who must file W-8ben.

    For a good explanation of these requirements check out what Google Adsense has written on the subject:

    https://www.google.com/adsense/stati...S/TaxInfo.html

    Generally I would suggest you seek professional tax advice from a certified public accountant regarding these type of questions... but in this case even CPAs seem to get confused unless they have specific experience or specialize in this area.

    Your best bet will be to consult with a CPA who specializes or has knowledge in this area as you can see from the answers in this thread you get mixed responses some saying one thing and some saying another contradicting each other.
    • Profile picture of the author Avatar1728
      Ok, so im really confused about this!

      I have been accepted by some CPA networks who have requested I submit a W-8BEN. I am based in the UK. If I submit a W-8BEN am I any worse off?? :confused:
      Will it mean I get taxed more or less? And will I get taxed again in the UK??

      What is going to be the best route to pay the least tax? Any advice greatly appreciated.
      Thanks
    • Profile picture of the author Josh Anderson
      This is a question you should ask them directly. If their accountants do not know what they are doing and if they require it to promote... you just have to choose.

      When you give a company a W8BEN they are required to withhold 30% in accordance with the W8BEN.

      So the other people who posted to this thread and said that they require W8BEN no matter what... I hope they actually read and understood the form and their withholding responsibilities and liabilities and how stupid it would be to collect it when it is not required.

      This is WHY I provide the example of Google:

      Originally Posted by Josh Anderson View Post

      Lots of confusion and misinformation in this thread.

      Some foreign affiliates must submit a w-8ben but NOT all.

      Let me try and help clarify this for you:

      Those with NO US activities are not required to. However, you need to understand what US activities means. In a nut shell any affiliate who operates business with a location in the US or who has employees in the US or who owns equipment in the US has US activities.

      Those are they who must file W-8ben.

      For a good explanation of these requirements check out what Google Adsense has written on the subject:

      https://www.google.com/adsense/stati...S/TaxInfo.html

      Generally I would suggest you seek professional tax advice from a certified public accountant regarding these type of questions... but in this case even CPAs seem to get confused unless they have specific experience or specialize in this area.

      Your best bet will be to consult with a CPA who specializes or has knowledge in this area as you can see from the answers in this thread you get mixed responses some saying one thing and some saying another contradicting each other.
  • Profile picture of the author EmpyreRJ
    Form W-8BEN is the form you have to fill up
    • Profile picture of the author Avatar1728
      Originally Posted by EmpyreRJ View Post

      Form W-8BEN is the form you have to fill up
      I know I have to fill in the W-8BEN. My question is more about the tax. Will I get taxed twice? Once from the US and then again from the UK?
      I dont have a company registered in my name, payments will be in my own name. But im thinking more of end of year tax in the UK.
      Does submitting the W8BEN mean I will get taxed 30% on my comissions from the US government?

      What is the best route for paying the least tax?
  • Profile picture of the author LightBurner
    Forgot to mention that Commission Junction has a "Certification Of No United States Activities"

    For those who wonder what it says and/or looks like, I made a copy paste of it:

    ************************************************** ****************

    Certification Of No United States Activities

    Please sign and attest to the following information. By completing this form and clicking SUBMIT FORM you affirm that:

    Publisher represents and warrants that it does not have any employees or equipment located in the United States ("U.S. Activities") that are involved in any way with the revenue that has been or will be earned by Publisher pursuant to the Commission Junction Affiliate Marketing program. U.S. Activities include, but are not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the U.S., or having employees in the U.S. who are involved in either:

    Setting up Publisher's web server, hosting service, or website
    Developing content for Publisher's website
    Marketing to create a user base for Publisher's site
    Telephone support for Publisher's site
    Buying products for Publisher's site
    Maintaining Publisher's site

    Certification and signature of Publisher or a duly authorized representative of Publisher

    Publisher represents and warrants that it does not have any employees or equipment located in the United States ("U.S. Activities") that are involved in any way with the revenue that has been or will be earned by Publisher pursuant to the Commission Junction Affiliate Marketing program. U.S. Activities include, but are not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the U.S., or having employees in the U.S. who are involved in either:

    Signature *|________________________________________|
    Typing in your name acts as your signature.

    * Required fields

    The date and time of submission and your computer's IP address will be recorded when you click Submit Form.

    ************************************************** ****************

    I guess that if you have any problem with a company, you could probably copy paste that in an email for them to read.
    • Profile picture of the author Vladutz
      Originally Posted by LightBurner View Post

      Forgot to mention that Commission Junction has a "Certification Of No United States Activities"

      For those who wonder what it says and/or looks like, I made a copy paste of it:

      ************************************************** ****************

      Certification Of No United States Activities

      Please sign and attest to the following information. By completing this form and clicking SUBMIT FORM you affirm that:

      Publisher represents and warrants that it does not have any employees or equipment located in the United States ("U.S. Activities") that are involved in any way with the revenue that has been or will be earned by Publisher pursuant to the Commission Junction Affiliate Marketing program. U.S. Activities include, but are not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the U.S., or having employees in the U.S. who are involved in either:

      Setting up Publisher's web server, hosting service, or website
      Developing content for Publisher's website
      Marketing to create a user base for Publisher's site
      Telephone support for Publisher's site
      Buying products for Publisher's site
      Maintaining Publisher's site

      Certification and signature of Publisher or a duly authorized representative of Publisher

      Publisher represents and warrants that it does not have any employees or equipment located in the United States ("U.S. Activities") that are involved in any way with the revenue that has been or will be earned by Publisher pursuant to the Commission Junction Affiliate Marketing program. U.S. Activities include, but are not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the U.S., or having employees in the U.S. who are involved in either:

      Signature *|________________________________________|
      Typing in your name acts as your signature.

      * Required fields

      The date and time of submission and your computer's IP address will be recorded when you click Submit Form.

      ************************************************** ****************

      I guess that if you have any problem with a company, you could probably copy paste that in an email for them to read.

      If we get an outsourcer from the US to do work for us, such as building sites etc...does this class as an employee and thus mean that we can't use the "Certification Of No United States Activities"??

      Thank you
  • Profile picture of the author Rolliesworld
    Great thread. So as a non-US-Resident how do you go about managing your affairs with those Affiliate program providers (like Hostgator) that simply ask you via automated message in your affiliate screen, to either complete W9 (US Resident) or W-8BEN (non-US-Resident)?
    Will they simply accept that you declare that you have "No United States Activities" by referring sales to them from being based outside of the US?
    Apart from the fact that it might not be needed to complete this form, is there any implication by actually just completing it? I mean, are you sure they won't even submit it to the IRS?
  • Profile picture of the author iwy000
    I always use W8BEN.
  • Profile picture of the author MotiveTeresa
    I always request W8BEN from international affiliates.
  • Profile picture of the author gonzoman925
    sorry to bump an old thread but rolliesworld has a good question, i recently joined hostgator and they were bugging me to fill in that form so i cancelled. should i have to fill it in?
  • Profile picture of the author LightBurner
    When I posted here my "Thank you" reply, I was in the middle of discussions with Commission Junction about this whole W-8BEN. They were adamant that I HAD TO sign the W-8BEN. They were being extremely forceful about it and basically said that if I didn't sign it, I couldn't get paid (which is basically forcing people to sign UNDER DURESS... which is illegal and makes any document void in any court of law! you usually have to write, next to your name, "signed UNDER DURESS" - but I think that if you end up in court about it, you can explain the fact that they've told you that you wouldn't get paid unless you signed the form and that there was nowhere to say that you signed under duress, pretty sure a judge would say the form is void and therefore illegal)... I, then, copy pasted the information the poster provided and within 2-3 business days, Commission Junction was offering the option of signing a Certificate of No U.S. Activities!!!

    No matter what they say, you have the law on your side (if the W-8BEN doesn't apply to you)! I held my ground and now it's available for everybody who wants to sign that certificate.

    I'm currently holding my ground with another company! lol Just sent them this info today and told them to check with their lawyers!

    Know that most of the time, the people answering your questions are people working in call centers and who are told what to say and what to do! The majority of them don't actually know the law! They don't have any interest in getting informed either. And I'm saying that because I worked for many years in call centers where I had to follow protocols/procedures when answering phone calls and emails. So the more you hold your grown, the more they have to escalate your inquiry. The higher it goes, the least they can ignore it. Just make sure that you BCC yourself whenever you send them an email!!!

    If nothing changes no matter what you do, then I suggest finding the names and email addresses of the high ranking people of the company and to send them an email (and include the email thread the call center people and you have been emailing each other) explaining what has been happening with your inquiry and ask them that they resolve the issue by making a Certificate of No U.S. Activities available to everyone who needs it!

    If you're persistent, you'll get the outcome you're looking for because THEY HAVE TO provide you with that option. Not doing so is going against the law!!!

    Good luck to you all!!!

    LB
  • Profile picture of the author LightBurner
    I just noticed that Google AdSense has updated their site and information. Although those were updated, the whole Certificate of No U.S. Activities still stands!

    ----------------------

    Why can't I submit a W8-BEN form as an individual?


    Based on our understanding, due to the nature of the services provided by the Google AdSense program we cannot accept a W-8BEN form from an Individual.

    If you are a nonresident alien individual who earns revenue through our AdSense program, this revenue is characterized as payments for personal services. Therefore, as stated in the instructions to the Form W-8BEN, you must complete the Form 8233 rather than the Form W-8BEN if you believe that you are entitled to an exemption from U.S. income tax withholding on AdSense payments by Google.

    However, before you resubmit a Form W-8 or a Form 8233 we recommend that you review the description of US Activities below to confirm that you do have US Activities and are submitting the correct IRS form. If you do not have US Activities, you will not need to submit any tax forms.

    United States (US) Activities involve having employees or owning equipment in the US that are involved in any way with revenue earned through the AdSense program. This includes, but is not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the US, or having employees in the US who are involved in either:

    setting up a web server, hosting service, or website
    developing content for your website
    marketing to create a user base for your site
    telephone support for your site
    buying products for your site
    maintaining your site

    Generally, utilizing an unrelated third-party US web hosting service to host your webpages, renting web servers that are located in the US from an unrelated third party, or having your payment sent to a US Post Office Box or mail forwarding address, do not of themselves constitute US Activities.

    If you do not have US Activities, please click on the Foreign Publisher with no US Activities link and agree to the statement on that page. In this case, no tax forms are required.

    If you do have US Activities, please follow the instructions on the Tax information page to update your current form, or to submit a new form.

    Please note that the tax information collection interface and any tax-related information provided by Google is not intended as and should not be construed as legal, tax, or investment advice. You should always consult your tax advisor to help answer specific questions regarding how tax laws apply to you and/or your business. The tax summary we have provided is necessarily incomplete, and the tax laws and regulations are subject to change. Therefore, Google does not guarantee and is not liable for the accuracy or completeness of any tax information provided, or any results or outcome as a result of the use of this information.

    --------------

    Quoted from page: https://support.google.com/adsense/answer/1322037?hl=en

    So to make it clear, W-8BEN cannot be use for payments made for personal services of a nonresident alien individual. Therefore, the Form 8233 has to be used ONLY if you DO have U.S. Activities.

    If you DO NOT HAVE U.S. ACTIVITIES, then you have to sign a "Foreign publisher with no U.S. Activities" form (aka Certificate of No U.S. Activities). In this case, no tax forms are required.
    • Profile picture of the author Rolliesworld
      Looks like these are the specific sections on the form:

      Do not use Form W-8BEN if you are described
      below.
      [...]
      You are a nonresident alien individual who claims
      exemption from withholding
      on compensation for
      independent or dependent personal services performed in
      the United States
      . Instead, provide Form 8233, Exemption
      from Withholding on Compensation for Independent (and
      Certain Dependent) Personal Services of a Nonresident
      Alien Individual, or Form W-4, Employee's Withholding
      Allowance Certificate.
      ---> Emphasis on: Personal services ***IN*** the United States.

      AS OPPOSED to: ****from outside the United States****


      So how are ALL the other, literally HUNDREDS of Affiliate Networks around the US are handling this these days? Anyone still submitting this form and/or getting 30% withheld?

      Also - it seems many people from outside of the US (non-US residents) are establishing a business in the USA, mostly an LLC and from my understanding, the same rules apply, i.e. no tax on income that is regarded as 'not US-source'. But what form would the non-US owner of a US LLC have to submit? And does this definitely not lead to withheld tax (by the affiliate network), nor tax due to IRS? It shouldn't, but I'm hoping someone could chime in here to confirm their experience.





      Originally Posted by LightBurner View Post

      I just noticed that Google AdSense has updated their site and information. Although those were updated, the whole Certificate of No U.S. Activities still stands!

      ----------------------

      Why can't I submit a W8-BEN form as an individual?


      Based on our understanding, due to the nature of the services provided by the Google AdSense program we cannot accept a W-8BEN form from an Individual.

      If you are a nonresident alien individual who earns revenue through our AdSense program, this revenue is characterized as payments for personal services. Therefore, as stated in the instructions to the Form W-8BEN, you must complete the Form 8233 rather than the Form W-8BEN if you believe that you are entitled to an exemption from U.S. income tax withholding on AdSense payments by Google.

      However, before you resubmit a Form W-8 or a Form 8233 we recommend that you review the description of US Activities below to confirm that you do have US Activities and are submitting the correct IRS form. If you do not have US Activities, you will not need to submit any tax forms.

      United States (US) Activities involve having employees or owning equipment in the US that are involved in any way with revenue earned through the AdSense program. This includes, but is not limited to, owning a web server or owning a hosting service in the US, or having employees in the US who are involved in either:

      setting up a web server, hosting service, or website
      developing content for your website
      marketing to create a user base for your site
      telephone support for your site
      buying products for your site
      maintaining your site

      Generally, utilizing an unrelated third-party US web hosting service to host your webpages, renting web servers that are located in the US from an unrelated third party, or having your payment sent to a US Post Office Box or mail forwarding address, do not of themselves constitute US Activities.

      If you do not have US Activities, please click on the Foreign Publisher with no US Activities link and agree to the statement on that page. In this case, no tax forms are required.

      If you do have US Activities, please follow the instructions on the Tax information page to update your current form, or to submit a new form.

      Please note that the tax information collection interface and any tax-related information provided by Google is not intended as and should not be construed as legal, tax, or investment advice. You should always consult your tax advisor to help answer specific questions regarding how tax laws apply to you and/or your business. The tax summary we have provided is necessarily incomplete, and the tax laws and regulations are subject to change. Therefore, Google does not guarantee and is not liable for the accuracy or completeness of any tax information provided, or any results or outcome as a result of the use of this information.

      --------------

      Quoted from page: https://support.google.com/adsense/answer/1322037?hl=en

      So to make it clear, W-8BEN cannot be use for payments made for personal services of a nonresident alien individual. Therefore, the Form 8233 has to be used ONLY if you DO have U.S. Activities.

      If you DO NOT HAVE U.S. ACTIVITIES, then you have to sign a "Foreign publisher with no U.S. Activities" form (aka Certificate of No U.S. Activities). In this case, no tax forms are required.

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