Sales Tax Settings are Live

On May 6th we let you know that Patreon is being required by law to add sales tax to more patron pledges from July 1st 2020. As part of that announcement, we promised to provide settings which will allow creators to give a lot more detail about what patrons are getting as part of their membership.

Today we’re letting you know that these new Sales Tax Settings are now live, and we’re encouraging all creators to take some time to make full use of them. By giving us more detail about what’s in each of your tiers, it gives you a lot more control over how sales tax will be applied to your membership and potentially save your patrons money on sales tax.

Click here to start the guided walk through. If possible, we recommend going through these changes on a laptop or computer, not a mobile device, to ensure you can see our pointers along the way.

To help guide you through every step of the settings, here are some more resources:

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If you can’t attend a live workshop and walkthru of the settings, you can see a demo of the settings in the video below:

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@Jack_Conte just shared a video explaining the details of the settings, which you can watch below!

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We added some more info about GST to our help article, in case any Australian folks had questions.

You can read the full FAQ here.

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How can I inform my patrons of this change?

How can i email them all in a single email?

Thank you

Lewis

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Hello!

I’ve made adjustments to my Patreon regarding sales tax, but I got another email that I haven’t done what I’m supposed to. I just went in and edited some more things. How do I know if I finally filled out everything correctly?

Thank you!

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You should be fine.

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Hi @Music_is_a_Rainbow :wave:
We’re terribly sorry for the confusion regarding the sales tax email! If you received this email, it is because you have not finished updating the “Adjust benefit value” feature. To finish this:

  • Click on Edit Tier on each one of your tiers
  • Scroll down to the Advanced settings and click the arrow to open
  • Check the box that says “Adjust benefit value for sales tax”
  • Then follow the instructions
    This step needs to be completed on all of your tiers, published and unpublished.

A small percentage of creators have completed the settings over the weekend. If so, you’ll see a pop up message when you login to Patreon.com telling you that you have completed the process and can disregard the email. So sorry again for the confusion! Let us know if you have any other questions - we’re always happy to help.

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Hi Lewis, so sorry I missed your message! If you haven’t already, click here to see how to bulk message your patrons. We also have sample messaging you can use and adapt for a message to your patrons about this change. Hope this helps! :slight_smile:

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Thank you, Reyna. One of my tiers won’t save for some reason. :frowning:

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Hmm, does it happen to be your highest tier? Some creators have run into an issue where their tier title is too long and settings can’t be saved.

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I also received the email saying I didn’t finish the sales tax setup. As far as I can tell, I went through all the steps Reyna is describing, back on June 8th, for each of our tiers. I really have no idea what remains undone. It isn’t related to the message about moving the Patreon bot around in Discord, is it? (When I open the Advanced settings, I get a notification in red letters about having to adjust this; but it doesn’t seem that it should really affect the sales tax being charged.)

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I also received an email saying “You didn’t finish your sales tax setup for July 1st!”. This is despite me despite completing this process 2 weeks.

I just clicked through all of my reward tiers, both published and unpublished. As far as I can see, I have specified the benefits for all of my tiers, as well as the relevant % figures for ‘Benefit value’. (Except for the tiers where there only is one benefit, so it is 100% by default).

I’m genuinely unsure as to why I got this reminder email when I think I already completed this task.

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Reyna:

I would be most interesting and informative if Patreon could explain in layman’s terms exactly what my Patrons are being charged Sales Tax for.

I am not selling a product or any element of my WordPress Blog presentations as opposed to Patreon members who are selling an actual product.

All of my posts on Patreon are “Public” and also appear on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc. where I also solicit donations which, unlike Patreon, are not subject to any Sales Tax.

I simply solicit donations which at least in my fair state of New York are not subject to Sales Tax.

It is worthy to note that GoFundMe, AdSense, Caring Bridge, WordPress Ads, do not charge any Sales Tax for the same identical blog posts and solicitations on their sites.

In view of these facts I am somewhat dubious of Patreon charging Sales Tax to my Patrons or why I should not simple ask my Patrons to donate via GoFundMe as opposed to utilizing Patreon and save themselves any purported Sales Tax.

Substantive and pragmatic input on this issue would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Lewis

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I too got the email. The response by reyna says “it is because you have not finished updating the “Adjust benefit value” feature”. Not so for me. That was done a couple of week’s ago.

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I have two tiers that are grandfathered in that are below the $1 mark.

Because they are under $1, I can’t edit them or update them. I need access to edit those tiers before July 1st.

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Update: I emailed the Patreon support team about this, and they looked over my rewards tiers, and confirmed that I had already completed the sales tax setup OK.

So, the email was sent to me by mistake. Just posting this here in case anyone else is scratching their head at why they were emailed…

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I would be most interesting and informative if Patreon could explain in layman’s terms exactly what my Patrons are being charged Sales Tax for.

I am not selling a product or any element of my WordPress Blog presentations as opposed to Patreon members who are selling an actual product.

All of my posts on Patreon are “Public” and also appear on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, etc. where I also solicit donations which, unlike Patreon, are not subject to any Sales Tax.

I simply solicit donations which at least in my fair state of New York are not subject to Sales Tax.

It is worthy to note that GoFundMe, AdSense, Caring Bridge, WordPress Ads, do not charge any Sales Tax for the same identical blog posts and solicitations on their sites.

Why I should not simple ask my Patrons to donate via GoFundMe as opposed to utilizing Patreon and save themselves any purported Sales Tax.

Substantive and pragmatic input on this issue would be greatly appreciated.

Thank you,

Lewis

First off, sales tax is not dependent on where you live, it’s all based on where your patrons live. If they live in an area that has sales tax for physical or digital goods and some of your items fall under those items that are taxed in their area, they they get taxed. It has nothing to do with you and where you live, at all.

Second, not all platforms have implemented a sales tax things yet and some aren’t subject to but the governments around the world want a cut of the digital sales space and they are starting to enforce the laws around digital sales taxes. It’s not something we really have control over and patreon as the server that it is, is bound to follow those laws.

By the sounds of it though, your tiers would fall under the “General Support” bracket inside the sales tax settings, which is not taxed in the majority of places so if you take the time to set that up, then it is unlikely that your patrons will get charged sales tax unless they live in a few places that do have laws around it.

Hopefully that helps a little. A lot of this information is laid out pretty simply in a lot of the FAQs and answered in questions in these threads as well.

The Question remains what exactly is being taxed? I am not selling any physical goods. The postings from my blog are FREE to the public. What then is being taxed?

Secondly, if a law has been passed implementing a tax they why would not all U.S. based platforms have also implemented such an enforcement by July 1, 2020?

Thirdly, for the purposes at hand the “governments around the world” are not relevant. The only relevant issue is the specific tax law that Patreon alludes to in charging an as yet ill-defined Sales Tax.

GoFundMe for example, is based in Redwood, CA. and they are not charging sales tax on donation requests. It beggars the imagination as to why they would blatantly ignore any purported Sales Tax Laws.

Thank you

Lewis