Studio Owner Guide to Taxes & Payouts

This article is your go-to resource for learning all about how Stoor handles Studio Owner Payouts and Tax Withholdings.

We encourage all of our Studio Owners and Affiliate Partners to review this entire article carefully as you make changes to your Payout & Tax Setup page, especially if you have questions about Payouts and Taxes. However, if you still have questions after reading this guide, please do not hesitate to reach out to us here or via support@stoor.pro 

Stoor's Tax Form

The Stoor tax and payout system is built on a platform called Stripe, which collects and securely stores all your tax and payout information. However, the Stoor Support Team will continue to be your resource for any and all payout questions.

Common Tax Form Questions

Will I need to register with Stripe?
Registration takes place through the Stoor platform; Once you're logged in as a Studio Owner, you will need to create a username or password with Stripe on the Store Settings - Billing setup.

I've been selling here for a while, and this is different. When was this system introduced? 
These changes were rolled out in January 2019.

What information will I need do I need to gather to complete my tax form and provide my payout details?
This will vary based on your country and filing status, but in general, you should have the following information on hand when completing your tax form:

  • Taxpayer Identification Number
  • Copy of Passport or other government-issued ID
  • Physical Address
  • Banking or Stripe Information 

Payouts

Requesting a Payout

You have between the first and last day of the month to request a payout. Requests must be made by 11:59 pm UTC+0 on the last day of the month. We'll begin processing your payout after the first five business days of the first day of the following month.

Please note that it may take funds sent through certain payout methods (such as transfers) or to some countries longer to arrive in your account. Funds should arrive no later than the 10th of each month, but please note that this may not always be the case due to things like bank holidays or the 1st of the month falling on a weekend, etc. 

Please note that our payout system is NOT AUTOMATED. While you may select the option to "Withdraw full earnings balance at the end of the month", you must still press the "Request Payout" button each month in order to receive a payout.

Payout Methods

Stoor is committed to offering you a fast and easy way to get paid. That's why we actually offer the Stripe payout method.

Common Payout Questions

How will the fees be paid?
If you choose a method which has a fee, that amount will automatically be deducted from your payout. Please note that some intermediary banks may charge an additional fee for Wire payouts and/or currency conversion. This fee is not controlled by Stoor, and you should contact your bank to determine if you will be charged this fee.

What if I request multiple payouts each month?
These payouts will be combined and processed as one payout.

Are all payout methods available in my country?
Some payout methods are not available in all countries. You can view a list of available payout methods in your country here.

What if I can't get ACH/eCheck payments in my country? Does this mean there is no method with waived transaction fees for me?
To ensure you have a free way to receive your earnings, there will always be at least one method in each country wherein Stoor will pay all transaction fees. If ACH/eCheck is not available, then you will need to cover 100% of your PayPal transaction fees. If neither ACH/eCheck/PayPal is available in your country, you will need to cover your Wire Transfer fees.

Why can't I choose PayPal as my payment method?

If you don't see PayPal as an option when you're going through the Tax and Payment Setup, it's because you live in a "PayPal Non-Receivable" country. PayPal accounts held in PayPal Non-Receivable countries can send payments, but they cannot receive them. This does not mean that receiving your payout via PayPal is not an option, however!

If you would prefer to use PayPal as your payment method, you may do so only if you have a PayPal account located in a PayPal receivable country. To choose this method, please do the following:

  1. Sign in to Stoor and go to your Tax and Payment Setup page
  2. In Step 1 (Address), click the "Edit" button
  3. Towards the bottom of the page, click, "Select to be paid in a different country than the above"
  4. For "Payment Country,” select the country where your PayPal account is located
  5. Click “Next"
  6. In Step 2 (Payment Method), select PayPal from the Payment Method dropdown
  7. Because your payment country has changed, you may be required to re-submit your tax form and provide supporting documents in Step 3 (Tax Forms)

I received my payout via PayPal, but the amount shows less than what I requested. Why?
If you live in a country where the PayPal transaction fee is not waived then you will be responsible for paying the PayPal transaction fee in the amount of 1% of your total payout. This amount will be deducted from your payout before being issued via PayPal.

You can view what payout method has waived transaction fees in your country here.

My payout was deferred for not meeting the minimum threshold. What does this mean?

Your payment was deferred for the following reason: Below minimum payment amount ( 1.030,00€** equivalent in your local currency).

In order to request a payout in your local currency, the amount requested must be the equivalent of 1.030€ **. If you'd like to receive a payout less than 1.030€, please update your Tax and Payout Setup to request your payment currency to USD for your next payout request.

**please note that 1.030,00€ is the standard threshold amount, but threshold amounts can vary based on your local currency. To confirm the threshold for your local currency, visit Step 2 of the Tax and Payment Setup.

Help! It's after the 15th of the month, and I didn't receive my payout.
If you didn't receive your requested payout by the 15th of the month, please contact our Support team here and let them know. You have 90 days from the payment date to submit a claim regarding any issues with your payout. After 90 days your funds will be forfeited.

Taxes

Tax Forms

EU’s VAT law that took effect in 2015 require us to begin charging VAT on all electronically supplied services (“ESS”), which include products offered on Stoor. The absence of required tax information may result in (additional) withholding. If you are a resident of a country that has an income tax treaty with the EU, you may be eligible for a reduced rate or exemption from withholding.

You may make a treaty claim via the correct tax form in to have a lower withholding rate for your US-source sales of projects and bundles.

Without a treaty claim, Stoor is required to withhold at a 30% rate. Note that if your country does not have a tax treaty with the EU, we are required to withhold 30%.

How does withholding work for earnings through the Affiliate Partner Program?
These earnings are subject to withholding, and you will still need to complete the proper tax form.

In the US, what are the names of the IRS Tax Forms, and who submits them?

FORMSUBMITTED BYW-9

(common) US Persons (individuals and entities) to provide their US Taxpayer Identification Number and Certification W-8 BEN

(common) Non-US Persons (Individuals) to provide a Certificate of Foreign Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting W-8 BEN-E

(common) Non-US Persons (Entities) to provide a Certificate of Foreign Status of Beneficial Owner for United States Tax Withholding and Reporting W-8 ECI

(uncommon) Non-US Persons to Claim That Income Is Effectively Connected With the Conduct of a Trade or Business in the United States W-8 EXP

(uncommon) Foreign Governments, International Organizations, Foreign Central Banks of Issue, Foreign Tax-Exempt Organizations, Foreign Private Foundations, and Governments of US Possessions to provide a Certificate of their Status W-8 IMY

(uncommon) For use by Foreign Intermediary, Foreign Flow-Through Entity, or Certain US Branches to provide a Certificate of their Status and transmit a withholding statement and respective tax documentation for the Beneficial Owners (if applicable)

Withholding Rates

If my country has a tax treaty with the EU how will that affect what info I need to supply to Stoor and how will it affect what, if anything, will be withheld from my earnings?
If your country has an income tax treaty with the EU, please fill out the treaty benefits portion of the Form. An income tax treaty will provide for a reduced or zero rate of withholding on royalty income. Please note that to claim a treaty rate you must provide a taxpayer identification number. You may view a list of the current withholding rates here.

Do I need to pay tax to the EU directly?
Stoor will be collecting and remitting any withholding to the EU. The EU government will not expect you to self-assess this tax.

Are my Stoor earnings classified as royalties?
Generally, transactions in digital creative content give rise to royalty earnings. Your earnings may be subject to withholding based on your country’s income tax treaty with the EU.

How is tax withholding calculated?
We withhold the amount indicated on your tax form for each project you sell to a EU buyer. Your sales page will show columns illustrating the breakdown of earnings and tax withholdings. Here's an example of how it works (please keep in mind that this may differ from your situation.)

The following Example Seller has a 15% withholding rate.

Sale 1: Sale to a EU customer

Indiana Jones purchases a 1000€ Project. Here’s a breakdown:

  • Price: The item's total price 1000€
  • Taxes: 15% of $1000 is 150€ (0.15 x 1000 = 150)
  • Customer will pay: 1150€ (1000+150)
  • Stoor Commission of 20%: 20% of 1.000€ is 200€ (0.2 x 1000 = 200)
  • Taxes + Stoor Commission = 350€
  • Earnings: The seller earns 800€ = 1150€ - (Taxes + Stoor Commission)

Sale 2: Sale to a non-EU customer

Since this referred customer is outside of the EU, there are no taxes withheld on that sale for this seller. So, here’s a breakdown:

  • Price: The item's total price 1000€
  • Customer will pay: 1000€ (1000)
  • Stoor Commission of 20%: 20% of 1.000€ is 200€ (0.2 x 1000 = 200)
  • Earnings: The seller earns 800€ (1000€ - Stoor Commission)

Why is the tax withheld from each sale lower than the sale price? 
If you notice that tax withheld is lower than the sale price that's because the buyer used a discount and the tax is based on the discounted amount.

Why do you take taxes from the project's sale price instead of the amount I earned from the sale?
The law written in the agreement requires us to withhold from the original sales price. We must comply to the letter of the law, so the tax is calculated from the original sales price.

Taxpayer Identification Number

Do I need to include a Taxpayer Identification Number?
A Taxpayer Identification Number (also called a TIN) is necessary to make a treaty claim. Without a treaty claim, the EU mandates that we withhold 30% of all sales made to customers within the EU. All Studios will be automatically withheld at 30% until they have submitted a valid tax form and/or made a valid treaty claim.

What if I do not have a TIN or do not know if I do?
Many countries issue citizens or residents a TIN automatically, but it may be called something else. Your TIN would be a unique number issued by your government which you may use to pay taxes or identify yourself. You may be able to find it on your government-issued identification card or passport. In most cases you may easily apply for a TIN from your government. 

Please see the table below for a list of what a TIN may be called in your country. If your country is not on this list, it doesn’t mean you do not have a TIN. Additionally, this resource may prove helpful to you in locating your TIN.

Affidavit of Unchanged Status

As the final step in providing your payout and tax information, you will be asked to complete an Affidavit of Unchanged Status confirming your tax information.

Why do I need to fill this out?
If you are subject to tax withholding, you will be asked to complete the Affidavit. This affidavit is for our records and helps us ensure that we have consistently withheld at the correct rate.

Where can I submit my Affidavit of Unchanged Status (and supporting documentation)? 

You can upload your signed affidavit and supporting documentation here.

I already filled this out, do I need to do it again?
No, if you were part of the group who completed this step in June-August 2017 you do not need to complete this step again.

What is Supporting Documentation?
If the date of your first sale is more than a year ago you may be required to provide Supporting Documentation (ie., passport, etc.).

If you are filing individually (meaning you do not have an entity or company) the following documents may act as Supporting Documentation:

  • A certificate of residence - A certificate of residence issued by an appropriate tax official of the country in which the payee claims to be a resident that indicates that the payee has filed its most recent income tax return as a resident of that country.
  • Individual government identification - This would include any valid identification issued by an authorized government body that is typically used for identification purposes (such as a passport).
  • A third-party credit report.

*NOTE: For most users filing individually, a passport is their preferred documentation.

If you are filing as an entity (meaning you have legally incorporated and are a company):

  • General documentary evidence: any organizational document (such as articles of incorporation or a trust agreement), financial statement, third-party credit report, letter from a government agency, or statement from a government website, agency, or registrar (such as an SEC report).
  • Entity government documentation: any official documentation issued by an authorized government body (for example, a government or agency thereof, or a municipality).
  • Payee-specific documentary evidence: a letter from an auditor or attorney with a location in the United States that is not related to the withholding agent or payee and is subject to the authority of a regulatory body that governs the auditor's or attorney's review of the chapter 4 status of the payee, any bankruptcy filing, corporate resolution, copy of a stock market index or other document to the extent permitted in the specific payee.

*NOTE: For most users filing as an entity, a financial statement or papers of incorporation are their preferred documentation.

What if my information has changed?
If your information has changed, you still need to complete and submit the Affidavit of Unchanged Status and provide Supporting Documentation (if requested). Simply use the space provided on the Affidavit to outline what has changed such as address, country of residence, or tax status.

Disclaimer: Stoor does not provide tax advice. For further information and to ensure you are complying with tax laws, please consult a tax professional.