Day by Day Cartoon by Chris Muir

Monday, March 5, 2012


I'm pissed.

When I started my business in Wisconsin years ago, I got a sales tax account, since I could not buy anything from wholesalers unless I could show them my sales tax certificate.

The Department of Revenue wanted periodic filings of how much I collected. Since I had nothing in the way of sales, I kept reporting "$0". Finally, they revoked my certificate because I never had anything to file.

Now, it happens that I have an opportunity to actually sell some merchandise - and the wholesaler won't sell it to me unless I send them a copy of my sales tax certificate.

So, being a good citizen, I went to the Wisconsin Department of Revenue web site and tried to use their on-line registration to get the certificate. Doing it by mail takes up to 15 days, and my customer is impatient.

It asks me if I've registered my business - "yes", as I have an LLC.

I use my SSN as an ID. It accepts this.

Now, it wants to know my name. Put that in. Next, it asks if I am a "Disregarded Entity". What the f**k is that? The other choices are "Single Member of a Disregarded Entity" or "None of the Above". The first choice is greyed out.

"None of the Above". Click OK.

Now it wants to know which permits I want. The Seller's Permit, which is what I want, is greyed out. I should feel free to ask for permits to run a dry-cleaning business, though.

Back a step - select "Single Member of a Disregarded Entity".

Now, it wants my "FEIN". I have no employees, and have always used my SSN. The IRS is happy with that. Put in my SSN. It takes it. Put in my legal business name. Onward.

Again, it asks what permits I want. Seller's permit is now un-greyed. Select that. Now, I get a check mark in the box for other permits I don't need. Onward.

It wants to know about the "Disregarded Entity" now. The choices are "account in single owner's name" - greyed out - and "account in LLC". So, select LLC.

Now it wants detail about where I have the shop. Fill out all the blanks, including telling them I don't live in special tax areas or run limousines. Next.

Tell them I expect minimal sales. Next.

Now comes the fun. "Disregarded Entity" information. Immediately, I have a RED BOX! My SSN is not acceptable! There's a box for "Business or Individual". The first time through, it lets me deselect "Business" and I try to enter "Individual".

It automatically changes back to "Business", and puts that RED BOX back up. Now, I can't change anything. It won't allow me to proceed until I tell it my FEIN, which I don't have.

It won't let me ENTER an FEIN, even if I had one.

Wasted an hour f**king with this crap. Now I have to take time off a paying job tomorrow to call their phone number and wait for a human.

This is why I am an anarchist.

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