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Tony Tax
Tony Tax, Tax Consultant
Category: UK Tax
Satisfied Customers: 15935
Experience:  Inc Tax, CGT, Corp Tax, IHT, VAT.
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Hi there, Can you please offer your expert advice. My

This answer was rated:

Hi there,

Can you please offer your expert advice.

My wife has been selling on as a small wedding stationery business since October 2012, but we have now realised that the ebay account and Paypal account (which was originally an ebay personal account before becoming an ebay business account) is all in my name (I’m her husband, Mark).

All the funds through Paypal (this is the sole source of all the business's incomings) go into our joint current bank account.

Therefore, can I please ask you if my wife is able to include her earnings from ebay on her self-employed tax return, bearing in mind that the ebay account and Paypal account is in my name? Or would I have to declare the earnings as my own, even though I have nothing to do with the business?

I’m a full-time employee at a separate company and so do not fill in, and have never filled in, a self-employed tax return.

The net profit of my wife's business after allowable deductions would be quite small, around £5,000 (April 2012-13). It is averaging a turnover of around £3,000 a month.

If you could also please advise on our best course of action moving forward, that would be greatly appreciated.

Many thanks, XXXXX XXXXX forward to hearing back from you.

Kind regards,

I can see no problem with your wife disclosing the ebay income as hers which it obviously is notwithstanding the fact that the receipts and payments go through ebay and paypal accounts in your name. I know several people who operated in the same way simply because their spouse or partner didn't have ebay or paypal accounts when they started their online business.

It would probably be as well for your wife to start her own ebay and paypal accounts. HMRC do monitor ebay and other online sites and it could cause some minor grief if they wrote to you about the activity on your ebay account. Assuming you have no day to day involvement in the business, it will be fairly straightforward to explain what has happened and why to the tax office's satisfaction.

I hope this helps but let me know if you have any further questions.
Customer: replied 4 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.

Can you tell me what was wrong with my answer please. What other information do you need? I've been working in tax for over 30 years so I know what I'm talking about from experience and don't believe in padding out answers with superfluous information for the sake of it. I have over 6,500 accepted answers on this site and high customer ratings so I'm not happy at having my answers dismissed without some form of explanation.

I suggested your wife open her own ebay and paypal accounts and from the rest of what you said in your question, its clear that you have a handle on what needs to be done tax wise generally. If you let me know what other information you need I'll do my best to help.

Tony Tax and other UK Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Apologies, I thought I had clicked the okay button. Please accept my apologies. I hope this does not have an affect on your ratings. I have clicked the excellent button now.


Kind regards, Mark

Thanks. It's a common mistake.

I was going to say that if your wife has yet to register as self-employed she can do so here. Furthermore, I would not volunteer the information about your wife's business being operated through your ebay and paypal accounts unless you are asked about it. There is no need to create work for HMRC. As I said in my answer, it wouldn't be a problem in any event and its quite alright to have transfers from paypal directed to your joint bank account.