Updated: Jul 9, 2020
Separate the facts from myths about selling in the US on Amazon
There are many rumours about what's required to sell on Amazon as a Canadian. And not a lot of facts you can rely on.
Selling on Amazon as a Canadian doesn't need to be complicated. In fact, you can be up and running in a matter of hours.
Facts about selling in the US from Canada: 🇺🇸
📦 You don’t Need to Open a U.S. Company to Ship and Sell Your Goods in the United States via Amazon FBA
📦 You don’t need an EIN to import into the US unless your shipment is over $2,500
📦 Shipments under $800 are duty Free entering the US
📦 Shipments between $800- $2500 do not require a formal entry but will be subject to duties.
📦 Shipments valued over $2,500 require Formal entries (using a broker) & paperwork – a broker can easily do this for you for $150-$250
📝 Technically, you may need to collect and remit US Sales Tax for certain States if you’re selling via FBA in the US. 95% of foreign sellers don’t though and the the cost of compliance is often more than the small risk for not doing so for most sellers. I’m not an expert on this matter, but it’s what’s being said by professionals
💵 As a Canadian, you shouldn’t have to pay Income tax in the US. We pay it to the CRA and have tax treaties in place to prevent double taxation. You could file Form 1120-F with the IRS (which tells the IRS “Hey, I sold stuff in the U.S. but I’m not paying tax because I’m a foreign corporation”. ) The majority of Canadians never file this, and it’s mostly for when sales get to be substantially large (I’ll leave it for an accountant to deem what‘s considered substantially large’) you should consider filing such a form.
🏦 You don’t need a US bank account and should only obtain one when you have decent sales volume. Amazon convert US payouts into Canadian dollars and add a fee af about 2%. When your sales are decent, that fee becomes a big chunk of your revenue. At that point a US bank account makes sense. BMO Harris (which is a U.S. based subsidiary of the large Canadian bank, Bank of Montreal) is the easiest one to use for this and I highly suggest you do.
Want more information, including sample paperwork and examples of how to sell in the US from Canada? 🇨🇦 Details here