eBay France bring in proper business registration

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eBay FranceeBay France have announced today that business sellers on the site will need to prove that they are officially registered as businesses. eBay are checking the information on sellers’ accounts against that held by the Registre du Commerce et des Sociétés, with which all companies and sole traders should already be registered.

Those whom eBay can link with their official registration need do nothing more. Those who can’t be matched will need to supply an official registration document plus a copy of their national ID card or passport, and then complete telephone verification with eBay Support. Registration will have to be completed by 30th October, or within 30 days of eBay notifying sellers that proof of status is required, whichever is sooner. Business sellers who do not complete the verification process will not be permitted to sell on eBay.fr after 30th October. From 6th October, new business sellers on eBay.fr will have to complete the verification process before being allowed to list items for sale.

To the best of my knowledge, eBay France are the first site to check all business sellers for proper registration. It’s perhaps easier here than it might be in some other countries because the necessary information is already in the public arena, but I think we can expect to see other eBay sites following France’s example in the not to distant future.

I would love to be able unreservedly to praise eBay France for taking this unprecedented step in cleaning up the site and ensuring their sellers are legal. In theory, I do that. But in practice, it all feels rather hit and miss: the overall time-scale, just ten weeks, seems short to complete everyone’s registration, and the lack of any more detailed up-front plan (“if we haven’t notified you we’ve found you by such-and-such date, then we need you to send your information in…”) leaves me as a seller feeling extremely insecure. I’ll let you know what happens.

12 Responses

  1. Can you imagine the outcry if the UK checked everyone was registered as a business? Wonder how many people would suddenly start paying tax? 😯

  2. Fantastic news, it’s how it should be. How will eBay do this in the UK though I don’t know what a nightmare checking all this, will they use unique tax reference numbers? Does this mean the level playing field that people crave is coming?

    I look forward to reading about the results in France, it’s only a matter of time for the UK me thinks 😉

  3. erm am I missing something here, the easy way round this would not to register as a business? at all,
    its no accident The USA is top of the dung pile
    they have their rules regs etc but they seem to want help folk to trade and make money not stop them

  4. PSs have to be registered as businesses, Norf, as do those who achieve a certain level of sales… I’m trying to find the details but .fr Help is as impenetrable as .co.uk Help.

  5. whats to stop
    you having multiple ids
    registered private and selling shed loads

  6. like all such things the honest will abide and follow the regulation
    the dodgy will just find a way round it

  7. In France, for one thing, the culture: avoiding tax isn’t seen as so heroic here. Generally, there’s the PITA factor, plus eBay will eventually (if not already) link the accounts. I don’t think anyone is saying any scheme is fool-proof, but I think this is much, much better than nothing.

  8. at least ebay.fr dont hide the fact their help section is wrote in a foreign language 😆

  9. nothing against regulation
    though I dont like it just so it can pay lip service
    if it makes the site better and more honest great,
    though I suspect it will just make life more difficult for honest sellers, rather than regulate the tax dodgers



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