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Bradley Walsh

How to Handle Tax Identification Numbers When Shipping Internationally

by Bradley Walsh

We live in a world with constantly changing government regulations, and international shipping is no exception. As goods are imported and exported across international borders, many countries have different rules when it comes to taxes and how to pay for those taxes. Tax identification numbers can identify a person or a business entity and can let governments know who is going to be paying taxes for goods crossing international borders.

Due to the IOSS regulations that were instated back in July of this year, many mail carriers adjusted how they handle tax identification numbers. Because of these adjustments, which many mail carriers made, EasyPost has introduced a new tax_identifiers shipment object in our API to handle passing these tax identification numbers to all carriers in an agnostic fashion.

The new tax_identifiers object in the EasyPost API consists of the following properties:

  • Entity: This is for stating what entity the tax ID belongs to, so in the case of the shipping world this will either be the sender or the receiver.
  • Tax ID Type: There are many different types of tax ID numbers so this property allows users to specify what type of tax ID they are passing along to the mail carrier. View a list of all the tax ID types and which carriers support which tax ID types.
  • Tax ID Number: This property allows users to pass their actual tax ID number.
  • Issuing Country: This property states which country the tax ID number was issued from.

Here is an example JSON snippet of what this new tax_identifiers object looks like in the EasyPost API:

    
      "tax_identifiers":[
        {
          "entity": "sender",
          "tax_id_type": "VAT",
          "tax_id": "DK99999999",
          "issuing_country": "DK"
        },
        {
          "entity": "receiver",
          "tax_id_type": "IOSS",
          "tax_id": "GB0123456789",
          "issuing_country": "GB"
        }
        ...
      ]
    
  

You can find more technical specifics on the new tax_identifiers object in the EasyPost documentation.

The world of tax identification numbers can be quite vast and complex. Due to the crucial nature of managing tax identification numbers across different mail carriers, EasyPost wants to make this process as simple as possible for developers integrating our API.

If you have any questions or need any clarification in regards to this newly introduced tax identifiers API object, please reach out to support and we will be happy to assist you.