Calculating taxes using Shopify API

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Shopify Partner
3 0 4

Hello everyone

We’re currently developing an app that will allow merchants to create orders through the api. For this we would like to calculate taxes.

1.) Is it correct that there is no way to use the Shopify API to calculate sales tax? Ideally I’d like to enter line-items and customer address and get the correct tax back. However, I haven’t found a way to do this using the Shopify API. 

Similar threads where this has been asked:

I don’t understand why taxes can’t be calculated through the API as Shopify obviously does this calculation when someone buys using the storefront. Or can they?

Is there a way to access Shopify’s tax calculation through the API?

2.) Ok, so now we’re calculating taxes ourselves using a third-party provider.  But how do we get the nexus (physical presence) states for any given shop? We need this information as taxes will only be charged in states where the merchant has a presence.

If we can’t get this information from the API we would have to ask the merchant to configure our app manually which would be unnecessary given that the information is already in Shopify (just not accessible through the API). Or is it?

Would be great to access the list of physical presences through the API.

3.) I’m also a bit confused as to how Shopify is calculating taxes. It seems that you are calculating the tax rate based on the address of the nexus which doesn’t seem correct in most states. E.g. South Carolina is a destination-based state meaning that the correct tax rates are those of the city and county where the buyer is located not where the nexus is located. (http://blog.taxjar.com/charging-sales-tax-rates/)

For the following example, the tax rate should be 6% as it’s a destination-based state:

  • Shop in 1322 Greene Street, Columbia, SC 29208 
    • State: 6%
    • County: 2%
    • Municipal: 0%
  • Customer in Converse Spartanburg 29329
    • State: 6%
    • County: 0%
    • Municipal: 0%

But it’s 8%. I don’t really understand why? Is there something else that needs to be considered or is this a bug?

There is a similar thread about this here: https://ecommerce.shopify.com/c/accounting-and-taxes/t/shopify-not-charging-correct-county-taxes-227...

Could you explain this to me, please? 

Thank you very much for your help.

Bettina

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Shopify Partner
96 0 19

+1.  We would love the ability to be able to use the Shopify Api to calculate taxes based on a list of items and a location.  This would be very helpful for us as well.

From what I can tell you can get locations of presence using the locations endpoint in Shopify(http://docs.shopify.com/api/location)

 

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Shopify Partner
3 0 4

Hello

Thank you for your comment and the hint, Andrew! You have asked something similar, haven't you? I've linked to your question my original post.

We tried using the locations endpoint but the json that is returned only shows an empty list ({"locations":[]}). Where in the admin interface do we need to set the locations? Adding states with physical presences doesn't seem to create a location. This thread says locations are created using a POS and asks how a test shop can set them up but there is no answer:

https://ecommerce.shopify.com/c/shopify-apis-and-technology/t/pos-locations-161281

The other problem we've encountered is that we don't know how to get the override rules. This has been asked here but not answered either: 

https://ecommerce.shopify.com/c/shopify-apis-and-technology/t/tax-overrides-243011

Would be great to get some ideas on how we could solve these problems! Shopify employees, could you plese help us with this, too. 

Thank you :-)

Bettina

 

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Shopify Partner
2 0 0
I am trying to connect to avalara can you share the code you are using for this. It would save me tons of work and we could co collaborate on fine tuning it.
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Shopify Partner
2 0 2

Would love to see this implemented as well, so that we can make a tax calculator on the Cart page.

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Shopify Partner
539 38 110

@Jessica_Klassen I wouldn't hold my breath on this. If the current solution for Shopify customers is upgrading to the Plus plan and also purchasing the Avalara app that only comes with Plus, then this is a revenue stream for Shopify. Not much incentive to expose API endpoints for this functionality from their perspective. Unfortunately!

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