Does an agency need my revenue agency certificate?
Thread poster: Clementine Vitek

Clementine Vitek  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:19
English to Czech
+ ...
Dec 1, 2010

An agency has been trying to avoid paying me. I've never been asked to present my revenue agency certificate before and was wondering if this is common or if they are just trying to avoid paying me? They are located in Hungary.

This is the email:
Are you registered at your local revenue agency? If yes, please send us a
certificate about it (we need it for accounting). If you are not registered
and don't have this certificate, please tell us.


[Edited at 2010-12-01 14:52 GMT]


Soonthon LUPKITARO(Ph.D.)  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:19
Member (2004)
English to Thai
+ ...
Requirements of certain countries Dec 1, 2010

Revenue agency certificate is vital in many business accounting systems but your client should have had told you in advance of invoice submitting. It is not quite straightforward in many countries to obtain that document e.g. WB-8 format for non-resident translators worhing with US firms.

Soonthon Lupkitaro


Katalin Horváth McClure  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 11:19
Member (2002)
English to Hungarian
+ ...
I think they are talking about VAT-registration Dec 1, 2010

I think by "revenue agency certificate" they mean some sort of certificate with your tax ID.
If you don't have a registered business, then this would be your SSN, and you should be very careful about disclosing that information.
The only reason I can think of an agency in the EU asking for anything related to tax IDs is VAT.
But since you are in the US, there is no VAT involved.
There is no required withholding on income, you are not an employee, and you are not a resident of Hungary neither the EU.
Try to clarify what they mean by their request, and why they think they need this.

[Edited at 2010-12-01 15:07 GMT]


Neil Coffey  Identity Verified
United Kingdom
Local time: 16:19
French to English
+ ...
Genuine bureaucracy in Hungary Dec 1, 2010

Clementine Vitek wrote:
An agency has been trying to avoid paying me. I've never been asked to present my revenue agency certificate before and was wondering if this is common or if they are just trying to avoid paying me? They are located in Hungary.

For some reason, there does genuinely seem to be extra bureaucracy in Hungary. The first time I worked for a client there, I ended up having to disclose my tax reference number to them, something which no other client in the known universe has ever asked me for. More recently I had to produce a tax residence certificate supposedly to prove that I wasn't a resident of Hungary. Quite aside from why the authority on who is a resident of Hungary isn't Hungary, this was a real pain because you have to snail-mail HMRC to get the certificate and they take about 2 months to open their mail-- so effectively I was forced to wait an additional 2 months for payment. This Hungarian client is coincidentally almost the only client that has involved paper contracts flying back and forth rather than just doing things via e-mail.

I'm sure that the extra bureaucracy is convenient to clients in giving them extra time to pay invoices, but it may well be genuine.


Αlban SHPΑTΑ  Identity Verified
Member (2008)
English to Albanian
+ ...
Eastern European agencies Dec 2, 2010

This happens mostly (or maybe exclusively) with EE agencies. So far, 1 agency from Poland, 1 from Bulgaria and 1 from Latvia have been asking for this certificate, otherwise they have to withhold a 10% fee from my invoices. Very annoying, fortunately this has happened only with 3 clients, and they are not satisfied with just a scanned copy of your registration certificate. No, they want you to send them by snail mail an original paper from the local tax office. I'd rather let them charge the 10%.

[Edited at 2010-12-02 14:47 GMT]


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