Amazon doesn't allow affiliates in California. Is a virtual address in another state a legal work-around?


Due to the "online tax" law that some states have created, Amazon has removed affiliates residing in those states from their affiliate program.

Unfortunately, Amazon accounted for most of our revenues.

The only thing that they really check is the physical address entered in the affiliate account. So, would getting a virtual office or a P.O. Box in another state offer a legal work-around?

As then Amazon would think we reside in that state, and not California.

Affiliate Amazon Affiliate Marketing Virtual Office

asked Aug 6 '14 at 16:43
Johnnie Barrett
9 points

2 Answers


Is it a legal workaround? Probably not. It's misleading, which means that when it comes to taxes and the US government, someone will be in trouble. I can't tell if it's you or Amazon, but someone is taking a lot of risk in doing so. Most likely, based on the fact that Amazon has an army of lawyers and you don't, you'll be the one taking all the risk and liability.

So just don't.

answered Aug 7 '14 at 16:26
Alain Raynaud
10,927 points


Yes, that is very clever. As far as Amazon is concerned, you reside in your mailing address state. If you collect revenue, technically you are required to report and pay taxes on income to your state or city. States enacted those dumb laws to capture state sales tax directly from Amazon.

Technically purchasers are supposed to tally out-of-state purchases and submit tax to their resident state, but of course no one does that. When you file your state tax, if you list your source of income as 'Amazon Affiliate', that has the potential to stir up a hornets nest. It is very, very unlikely anyone would notice or care, and even less likely your state would notify Amazon.

However, in the rare case a bureaucrat does notice, they may try to claw at the billions of dollars worth of merchandise Amazon ships to your state in an effort to steal more sales tax. They may cite you as a 'nexus of business' which is a requirement to collect tax from the merchant.

Instead, label the income as 'internet marketing' or similar. Problem solved. I leave it to you to search your soul and determine whether you believe your government is legitimate and want to declare that income at all.

answered Aug 13 '14 at 17:52
Starrychloe S.
83 points

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