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New tax center

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We're announcing the addition of a tax center to help our contributors submit the proper tax forms. Also, we will be withholding taxes for US sales of stock content from non-US contributors. These are not the most fun things we've ever introduced, but they're necessary to make sure we comply with US tax laws. Dreamstime is required to meet certain Federal tax withholding obligations, and we need all submitters to help us comply by furnishing Dreamstime with proper identification which includes your SSN, ITIN or Federal ID number (depending on whether you're an individual; corporation, or LLC) and an appropriate Tax Form.

We can assist you to determine which tax forms are appropriate and required by the IRS and/or by Dreamstime. While Dreamstime cannot give tax and/or legal advice, we will do our best to provide you with the information you need to make your own decision about how to comply with applicable U.S. tax laws.

Please click link below to access our Tax Center:

As a summary of what you need to do next, after you access the link above you will need to select the option that applies best in your case. Assuming that you are a non-US individual you will need to provide an US ITIN number. If you don't have one, you will need to submit an application for obtaining one with the US IRS.

If you have applied for the US ITIN but not have it already, you will need to enter "applied for" in the appropriate box and email us the number after the application is approved. Fill the rest of the information accordingly and provide a copy of your passport on the following page.

Without an ITIN (or EIN if you are a corporation) and a completed IRS Form W-8BEN on file at Dreamstime, we will be required to deduct a 30% US withholding tax from non-US contributor earnings coming from US buyers. This will come into effect for all payments requested after September 15.

Non US contributors who have provided the above will have a minimum withholding tax removed from their earnings, according to the treaty between US and their country. If no tax treaty exists betweem the two countries, the withholding tax will be calculated at 30%.

The withholding tax will be applied at payment request, not for every download. This will allow contributors to have enough time to obtain the ITIN/EIN before requesting payment.

The withholding tax will not be applied to US contributors, but they are still required to provide the needed information within the tax center.

Again, I realize that these requirements along with additional charges will not be popular. However, they are required and we will do our best to make the process smooth and easy. Also, we hope to compensate the additional taxes that will apply for our non US contributors by an increased amount of sales.

While we will do our best to answer your questions, you are strongly recommended to discuss with your legal/tax advisor.

We also encourage the contributors who have already gone through these tax procedures to post their experiences, steps to follow, tips and any relevant advice for their own countries.


Please read the entire thread to learn about the current procedures regarding the tax
Edited: 09/03/2010, 04:40:40 AM by Admin

1- the tax will only apply for U.S. sales, right? (Right: I just saw it in the FAQs - sorry).

2- If my country has no treaty with the U.S., 30% tax will be applied for me, so why bother apply for an ITIN, right? Should I still fill the corresponding papers?

3- Argh.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 09:10:30 AM
I am used to the new tax procedure but I never needed this US ITIN number. Strange!
Nikon, Nikon, Nikon!
Posted: 08/31/2010, 09:43:42 AM
dear lord :/ i do not understand anything about ITIN, and i do not understand instructions. I know how to fill w-8BEN form, and when i had an account at another agency W8 form was enough :/
Canon 60D
Posted: 08/31/2010, 09:53:56 AM

Originally posted by Ela9:
Quoted Message: dear lord :/ i do not understand anything about ITIN, and i do not understand instructions. I know how to fill w-8BEN form, and when i had an account at another agency W8 form was enough :/

I have also filled in the online form at another site. Ireland has a relevant tax treaty with the US that should result in withholding tax @ 0%. Do we really need to fill in paper forms for US revenue to get an ITIN? It doesn't seem possible to submit the online form here without doing so.
Vue 7, Daz 3, Wings 3D and the odd photo.
Posted: 08/31/2010, 09:59:09 AM
I filled out the form and submitted it, but there was no acknowledgement saying you received it. How do we know you got the form?

Thank you
Posted: 08/31/2010, 10:06:57 AM
I think this one deserves a note on the main page news, and/or e-mail - would be a shame to miss this...
ZD 50mm Macro f/2...
Posted: 08/31/2010, 10:09:26 AM

1. correct. and only for stock photography (not for referral etc)

2. You are correct about the ITIN. You still need to fill the W-8BEN form on Dreamstime (non treaty country instructions added to the form)

3. Ditto

@Starlet: a link to the form will be displayed next time you visit the tax center. if the link is not there, then the form didn't reach us.

@Brad: a news was posted + an email will be sent once everything is cleared and working smoothly.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 10:13:22 AM by Admin
Edit: I have gone to the tax center and saw no link. So I re-submited it and each time it asks me to make sure everything is correct and I click ok and then it says at the bottom of my screen it says "error on page" and when I go back to "Tax center" there is still no link.

Am I doing something wrong?

Thank you for your quick response.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 10:20:41 AM
Nothing seems to happen when I submit the form and I don't see any link when I visit the tax center again.

Is there any other indication that form was submitted successfully?

Nikon D90, Nikon D40, Canon S95, Various Nikon Lenses
Posted: 08/31/2010, 10:23:35 AM
Do we have to pay that?! even that DT is based on Romania?!?!
My PC with Adobe Photoshop & Illustrator, Nikon D3100
Posted: 08/31/2010, 10:25:45 AM
@Mani33 - Dreamstime is based in US not Romania. In Romania we only have a development office.

@Starletdarlene - could you please try again? We tested and everything is fine on our side. If you still encounter the same errors please email support.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 10:37:16 AM by Admin
What about another function in the rights management section that everybody could click or could not click for every given image?

"U.S. Usage" next to "Web Usage" and "Print Usage"

That would prevent many contributors from this U.S.-tax-specific problems.

Have a nice day!

for the fun)...
Edited: 08/31/2010, 10:37:58 AM
We've received forms filled as "no treaty country" for countries that where actually in the treaty list. This means that we will have to remove 30% for taxes instead of 10% or 0%!

Please don't rush and read everything carefuly, including the FAQs.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 11:20:57 AM by Admin
For 2010, I've cashed out an amount just under $599. This was so I could avoid having a 1099 filed since DT in the past would send in a 1099 if payments were over this amount. I've been letting the earnings build up and was going to wait until 2011 for the next payment request and deal with whatever taxes going forward.

So... my question: Is my strategy still valid? Will I avoid a 1099 for 2010 if my overall requested payments from DT are under $599?

I won't avoid taxes in 2011 going forward but I figured if I waited I would have a nice payday next January and save me tax headaches for this year.
Nikon D800, D100, Canon G15
Posted: 08/31/2010, 11:27:19 AM
Don't get it. I had a look at the General ITIN Information page here:,,id=222209,00.html

and it seems to state that the following people need a ITIN number:

individuals who need ITINs include:

• A nonresident alien required to file a U.S. tax return

• A U.S. resident alien (based on days present in the United States) filing a U.S. tax return

• A dependent or spouse of a U.S. citizen/resident alien

• A dependent or spouse of a nonresident alien visa holder

I am definitelz not resident in the US and am not a US citizen. And as far as I can tell I do not need to file a US tax return, which means that I do not require a ITIN number.

Or am I missing something?

Could anyone explain this to me please.

Posted: 08/31/2010, 11:48:34 AM

as I understand it, the W-8BEN form can be filled out without an ITIN number for those with a treaty. I am in Australia and we have a treaty with the US where only 5% tax is withheld. The ITIN number is only required to further reduce or eliminate the 5% or so that I can claim a deduction when completing my tax return locally.

I have not supplied an ITIN number to any other microstock agent or other US sites that pay me royalties and I only have 5% deducted from earnings from US buyers.

Can you please confirm that this is the case with DT as well. I imagine it would be unless something's changed? The forms are the same so I can't see why I would need to apply for an ITIN number. I do not want to waste time filling out forms and waiting months for an application to be completed if it is not required. I'm sure others don't either and it would save DT a lot of time.

Edited to add. Non-treaty individuals also would only need to apply for an ITIN to reduce, avoid or claim a deduction for the 30% tax withheld.
Edited: 08/31/2010, 11:58:55 AM
well, I am living in country with 0% tax, but I'm citizen of a non-treaty country, what with it?
Illustrator Inkscape Gimp pencil hand leg...
Edited: 08/31/2010, 11:53:08 AM
Illerent, I'd say it's worth you applying for an ITIN to avoid paying the 30% or at least reducing it.
Posted: 08/31/2010, 11:59:58 AM
I went back and re-entered everything and then it said to enter your "TIN" but as shown below it says: "For individuals, this is your social security number (SSN). So do I enter my SSN in both boxes? Thanks

Part I - Taxpayer Identification Number (TIN)

Enter your TIN in the appropriate box. The TIN provided must match the name given on Line 1 to avoid backup withholding. For individuals, this is your social security number (SSN). However, for a resident alien, sole proprietor, or disregarded entity, see the Part I instructions. For other entities, it is your employer identification number (EIN). If you do not have a number, see How to get a TIN.

Posted: 08/31/2010, 12:01:22 PM
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