Thursday, September 27, 2007

Europeans: You'll need to pay VAT on your SL purchases

According to a blog post from Second Life Insider, Linden Lab has been informing at least some European Second Life users that they will be adding VAT on top of any purchases, like land, subscription fees and tier fees.

Here's the text of an email cited by SL Insider:

"We have identified that you reside in a European country. Accordingly, your next bill will reflect Value Added Tax (VAT) charged at the rate specified by your country. Please note that VAT applies to all payments to Linden Lab such as land sales, monthly maintenance fees and Premium subscription fees.

"If you are eligible for a VAT exemption, you may submit proof of your exemption status, such as your VAT number, here:

"If you have other questions, please read the VAT FAQ:

"You can also contact us via the support portal:

"Best regards, and thank you for your continuing support.

"Linden Lab
Creators of Second Life"

This is noteworthy only because it means that if you're European, you're going to have to take that additional cost into account when figuring out your budget for, say, the land for your store. It probably won't be that much additional money, though if you owned an entire sim, it could probably add up.

It's an interesting move, if it happens to be true, which I have no reason to doubt. Americans, for example, haven't received any such email informing them that they will have to be paying sales tax. Though one wonders, upon reading this, if that will come soon.

More likely, Linden Lab has been told by the EU that it needs to collect the VAT, and, wanting to be a government-friendly corporate citizen, decided to comply. But of course, that's just speculation.

Anyway, keep it in mind when planning your budget, as you don't want to find yourself short of cash when it comes time to pay the taxman.

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