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Dwayne B.
Dwayne B., Attorney
Category: Business Law
Satisfied Customers: 32369
Experience:  Practicing for over 20 years and helped a number of businesses with litigation.
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I am planning to start an online business (Affiliate marketing)

Customer Question

I am planning to start an online business (Affiliate marketing) via which I am planning to share website links with users and get commision on each time the user purchases an item via my site. When I say via my site, I mean, user will click a link and the link will take them to the actual vendor for eg: kohls.com or hotels.com and they will make a purchase there. That would mean that I will not be selling any items directly from my site.

Here are my questions:
1) Do I need to file as a business (self Proprietor, LLC etc) or can I do this "business" without registration?
2) Incase I file a LLC (sole member) will I need to submit any files (tax related) to the governement other than my personal tax filing at the end of the financial year?
3) I am a non resident of USA. Will this impact me in anyway?
4) What would be my liability? Will I be liable since I do not seel any products via my websites, do not have any employees?
Submitted: 5 years ago.
Category: Business Law
Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 5 years ago.
1) You can do it as an individual.

2) If it is an individually owned LLC then you can file it as a Schedule C on your personal tax return. If you are forming an LLC to protect you from liability you probably want to file a separate corporate return so that this can't be used against you if you are ever sued.

3) No, not that I can tell but you need to look at the laws of your country to be sure.

4) There is always potential liability since the theory if something causes harm is to "sue everybody". However, it would be harder to sue you if you are not a US citizen and your liability is limited if you have an LLC, although you still would have to incur expenses to defend yourself.

Thank you for allowing me to assist you. As you know, we work on the honor system here and cannot always provide you answers that you like. I believe I have answered all of the questions you asked so I would request that you please click the ACCEPT button so I receive credit for my work and leave feedback if you have a chance. Please consider clicking "BONUS" as a nice way of saying "thanks" for a job well done, although this is neither required nor expected. I believe in giving information that is to the point, but please remember that I can only base our answers on the information you provide and sometimes a misunderstanding as to what you are looking for or already know occurs so feel free to ask additional questions or for clarifications. Be very careful about looking at other internet sites that just post generic information without any inquiry into your facts because often those answers are dated, wrong, or wrong as applied to your facts. Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely information. You should always contact a local attorney for legal advice.

Several customers have asked how they direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to provide information for you just put “FOR JD 1992” in the subject line and I will pick up the next time I am online.
Dwayne B. and 2 other Business Law Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 5 years ago.

Do I need to file as a business (self Proprietor, LLC etc) or can I do this "business" without registration?

 

Your reply was I can file it as an individual. Does that mean I can

Expert:  Dwayne B. replied 5 years ago.
You can do it as an individual. It is known as a "sole proprietor".

Thank you for allowing me to assist you. As you know, we work on the honor system here and cannot always provide you answers that you like. I believe I have answered all of the questions you asked so I would request that you please click the ACCEPT button so I receive credit for my work and leave feedback if you have a chance. Please consider clicking "BONUS" as a nice way of saying "thanks" for a job well done, although this is neither required nor expected. I believe in giving information that is to the point, but please remember that I can only base our answers on the information you provide and sometimes a misunderstanding as to what you are looking for or already know occurs so feel free to ask additional questions or for clarifications. Be very careful about looking at other internet sites that just post generic information without any inquiry into your facts because often those answers are dated, wrong, or wrong as applied to your facts. Please be aware that my answer is not legal advice, it is merely information. You should always contact a local attorney for legal advice.

Several customers have asked how they direct a question to me in particular. If you specifically want me to provide information for you just put “FOR JD 1992” in the subject line and I will pick up the next time I am online.