Kindle Publishing Non US Tax Status Now Made Easy

kindle publishing non US tax

Back in the summer I decided that I really needed to sort out my tax status on the kindle publishing platform. Why? Well my kindle book sales were increasing and I was beginning to realise that paying 30% tax on my royalties was starting to build up!

Initially it hadn’t bothered me because I was only selling a few books every now and then but as I have increased the number of books published and in particular after book number 4 (I don’t know if that is a special number or not!) I saw a big increase in overall sales.

Therefore I became more aware of the impact of only receiving 70% of my royalties as they came in each month. Since I live in the UK I have to pay 30% tax on all my royalties unless I submit an identification number to prove I live in a country that has a treaty with the US and therefore don’t have to pay any tax! (That’s the agreement for the UK – it will be different depending on the country you live in).

It then occurred to me that not only was I paying 30% tax to the US, I was also declaring that income in the UK and therefore being taxed on it again! All of this was becoming ‘taxing’ if you’ll excuse the awful pun there! ๐Ÿ™‚

So I was looking to see how you go about getting this special identification number which is called an ITIN or EIN number. At first it seemed you could fill out an online form and submit it to obtain this number but that functionality was removed for people living outside of the US!

Basically I needed to telephone a US number and speak to someone and get it that way. Of course calling the US would be expensive and I had no idea of how long I might be on the phone! So I procrastinated… until last week!

It Has Now Changed – Yeah!

Last Wednesday I had decided to set up a Skype call as it would be less expensive, and get this tax number. I had printed out the form and filled it in so that I knew exactly what the answers should be to save time!

I then visited the original website I had used to understand what I needed to do for last minute tips on how to go about it – thank you to Catherine Howard by the way!ย  I discovered that it has changed and is now really easy!

I don’t remember seeing any email from kindle publishing with this extremely useful and relevant information! If you live in the UK you can now just use your NI (national insurance) number!

So I logged into my kindle publishing account and clicked on the Update Tax Information tab and added my NI number where I needed to. Clicked to save, print and then finish and here it is – the proof 0%:

kindle publishing non US tax

This is what it says on Amazon KDP:

“If you are claiming a reduced rate of withholding tax under an income tax treaty and do not have a U.S. TIN, provide your foreign (non-U.S.) income tax identification number to receive treaty benefits. This number is issued by your local tax authority or government for income tax purposes.”

So there you have it. If you haven’t sorted this out for yourself yet then you now can – quickly and easily!

41 Comments on “Kindle Publishing Non US Tax Status Now Made Easy”

  1. Pingback: List of Resources for My Book Converting Kindle to Createspace | Kay Franklin Info Products

  2. Hello
    not sure if this blog is still active but it is the only blog I can find that is dealing with the KDP and tax problem in the UK. It seemed that Amazon have changed the form again and making it more confusing how to complete the last stage, Limitation on Benefits (LOB). There are so many different criterias and I do not know which one I belong to since the UK has moved out of the EEA and EU. I set up a company, specifically for KDP to get the NI, and I am unsure if which of the sections to complete. Can some one help. It is between Article 23(5) and Company that meets the derivative benefit test. It is unlikely the latter because we are no longer part of the EU or EEA. Can someone explain because I am on this last hurdle. Thank you

    1. Hi Eliz

      I think the form you are using is different to the one I use because I assume you are a business rather than an individual. I’m sorry I can’t help you with this. Perhaps it’s worth phoning or emailing amazon help to see if someone can help you. Or look on the KDP community forum posts. Here’s an interesting thread –
      Hope you can get this last but sorted.

  3. Hello, since I lost my job due to covid, I have been on benifts and still on benifts… I was wondering if I put my national insurance number into the kdp tax information… Would it affect my benefits? Before I make sales and after I make a few sales? Hope you can help me with that… Thank you for your time ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Hi Tom
      I can’t think of a reason why it would but I’m only guessing. If you start earning lots ๐Ÿ™‚ then it probably would affect your benefits but you would need to declare that anyway.

  4. Oh, you were a much sought-after blessing today! <3

    I stopped questioning it was that simple and just did it (I'm a newbie to KDP etc).

    NI number did the trick

    Thank you Thank you Thank you

  5. Hi Kay,

    Thanks for the useful information that you have provided. I published my book in August 2020 and completed the ‘tax interview’ via KDP – I also have an ‘applicable holding rate of 0.0%. Still, being a UK tax payer, am I right to assume I still need to declare my KDP earnings to HMRC at the end of the financial year?

    Many thanks,


  6. Hi Kay, I dont see the “NI” on my tax page, its still asking for a “TIN” a tax payer identification number. Do I just insert my NI instead? This is on the tax interview page.


  7. Hi Kay,

    If you want to publish through your own private limited business, how would you do so? What options would you select for the type of beneficiary owner?

      1. Hi Kay,
        As a sole trader, which option do we choose when selecting the โ€˜Type of beneficial ownerโ€™?

        Thank you

  8. Kay. (Belated) thanks for this article.
    A few years ago, I published a book on Creatspace as a test of the process, but never updated (or entered?) tax details. As I’m now preparing to set up with Ingram Spark I was looking into this issue again because I anticipate being ask for a code.
    I have one query if you don’t mind. In answer to providing my “foreign income tax identification number’ I would first have used my UTR (Unique tax reference) rather than NI number. Is the UTR accepted as an alternative, do you know?

    1. Hi Richard
      I’m sorry I don’t know the answer to your question. I’ve always used my NI number. If you find out then perhaps you could update your comment. Thanks

      1. Hi Kay

        I am currently in full-time employment and have a book i wish to publish on KDP!

        I am not registered as self-employed because I am in full-time employment…do you know if i need to register as Self-Employed as well before I publish my book?

        This is all a little confusing so i want to get it right! Thanks in advance. Jamie

        1. Hi Jamie
          Here are some helpful sites for you:

          If you start earning money with your kindle book then you would need to declare it for tax purposes and I assume then you would have to tell HMRC that you are also self-employed. If it were me (this is not legal advice of course) then I would wait to see what happens with my book before doing anything. Good luck!


          1. Hi Kay,

            Thank you so much for your reply – most helpful!

            All the best


  9. Hello,

    I am full-time employed – should I join this business as a sole trader or with an .ltd? Asking to understand how to deduct potential costs coming from running the business.

    Thank you

    1. Hi Guero

      It is up to you if you run as a sole trader or LTD. Here are a couple of good articles to read to help you understand the differences between them:

      If you want to get up and running quickly then sole trader is easiest. Just make sure you get some type of indemnity insurance if you choose sole trader because you will have to absorb any financial losses personally rather than being able to file them against a LTD company.

      1. Hello Kay,

        thank you for your response. Just to clarify, I was asking my question specifically referring to the Amazon selfpublishing business that, from my understanding, just implies that we get paid through royalties on top of which we obviously have some costs for production.

        Thank you very much.

        1. Yes that’s what I thought. If you’re already employed then any royalties will need to be taken into account to update your tax code. I’m not sure how that would work but it probably means doing some form of online tax self assessment.

  10. Hello Key,

    Thank you for that. Does that mean that tax will be paid automatically and there is no need to do a self assessment? Even if we have income from other sources? (income that is already taxed)


    1. It means that since USA has an agreement with UK, there is no USA tax to pay. However, all income where ever it’s from should still be declared when you fill out your self assessment for the year.

  11. So, I am a resident of the UK and I have a National Insurance Number, but I haven’t self published any books with Amazon yet. Could I apply using my NI number because it sounds like you have to supply your NI as a second option after giving them the Tax identification Number

  12. Kay, shouldn’t this be your tax number, as supplied on self-assesment materials/letters from HMRC, rather than your NI number?

    That’s what I used for the ‘interview’ for amazon affiliates.

    1. I’ve been checking. Apparently HMRC does use two different numbers in its communications with you, and TINs are used to try and unify international tax tracking. According to the EU, we don’t have a single TIN, the way some countries do, but they list both, which suggests either could be used.

      HMRC have this.

      The key is at the end of the page: “For most individuals in the UK the TIN will be their National Insurance Number.”

      That may be a better reference, if you hit an awkward official, than Kay’s experience, or yours. But not everybody has an NI number. Most of the rest of Europe has a simpler official ID system than we have here, no need for fussing with finding a recent utility bill.

  13. Hi Kay,

    What can we do about claiming back ALL the 30% tax witheld from previous years with Amazon? They will only give tax information for 2 years and I have been publishing books on KDP for 7.


  14. Hi Kay,

    I am a new visitor to your website. I love your site. You seem like such an awesome person. do you do any one-on-one coaching? Thank you so much for all the valuable information you provide.

  15. Thank You, Kay! Even though I’d done new tax interview, 30% was still being withheld.

    Decided to try once again after reading this my country tax ID number… did before but saw NO sign of it awhile ago.. and it was reduced to 10%. Turns out that the right percentage for Jamaica. ๐Ÿ˜‰

    Thank You SOOOO MUCH!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *