New to photography sites...question about taxes

I have been trying to find the answer to this for weeks and nobody seems to know. I can't even find the answer by googling my question. So I'm hoping someone in here can answer it. I am confused about the sales tax. I don't understand why it's up to us to type in what the tax rate is for each state. Are we supposed to research what the tax rate is in each state and go down the list and type each number in? If it's the same for everyone, why do these sites make us do this? What if somebody typed in the wrong number? I basically don't understand this at all and need someone to explain it to me in detail using laymans terms. I am starting to feel like I am not smart enough to do this and I am very discouraged at the moment.


  • ChessZenChessZen Administrator Posts: 514
    Sorry for any confusion on sales tax, Michelle.

    The way the sales tax works is that no sales tax is charged to your clients unless you choose to charge them for the sales tax. The only exception to this is when the partner vendor fulfilled order is shipped to California- in which case the sales tax is charged and sent to the California tax authority automatically.

    If you choose to charge the sales tax, the sales tax will be collected and given to you to submit to your local tax authority.

    When you choose to charge the sales tax, the default tax system from the state is automatically loaded. If the state has deemed that sales tax should be charged based on your local sales tax rate, the system will ask you for your zip code.

    If the state has chosen to set the sales tax based on the the address to which the order is shipped, the shipping destination option will be automatically displayed.

    in both cases, the sales tax rate will be automatically calculated and charged to your client.

    In some cases, the photographer may choose to charge a different sales tax amount from the amount automatically charged. For that reason, the 'Custom' option is provided so the photographer can manually set the sales tax rate.

    See this guide for more info -

    If you're still not sure about how the sales tax works, feel free to contact Zenfolio support.

    Do please note that we are not tax professionals and cannot and will not give out any tax advice regarding how much sales tax you should charge and how that amount is calculated. If you have questions about how much sales tax you should charge or the sales tax rules in your area, you'll need to contact your local tax authority for the most accurate information.
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