NY state capitol building requiring NYS vendor IDs
ComplianceAugust 31, 2022

NYS vendor ID vs. NY tax ID

A New York State vendor ID is required by any business who provides products and services to New York State and state-related institutions. But what is a vendor number, how does it differ from a NY tax ID, and how do you obtain one?

In this article we address these questions and other FAQs about the NYS vendor ID.

Is the NYS vendor ID the same as a NY tax ID?

No, the NYS vendor ID is not the same as a NY tax ID number.

  • A NYS vendor ID is a 10-digit code issued by New York State to identify whether the vendor is registered with the New York State Vendor File, a central registry for all state vendors. This database is administered by the Office of the State Comptroller (OSC).
  • A NY tax ID is issued by the New York State Tax Department to businesses selling taxable tangible personal property or services in the state.

In addition to a NYS vendor ID, a business contracted by the state may also require a NY tax ID.

Is an EIN the same as a NYS vendor ID number?

An employer identification number (EIN) or federal tax identification number is different than a NYS vendor ID number. An EIN is issued by the IRS and is used to identify a business entity and federal business tax returns.

How to get a NYS vendor ID and register as a vendor in New York state?

To register as a vendor in New York State, you must complete a form and submit it and any other relevant information to the contracting agency. The agency will then initiate the vendor registration process on behalf of the vendor, bidder, and their subcontractors with the Office of the State Comptroller.

Once the registration is processed and approved, your business is registered to the New York State Vendor File and will receive a unique 10-digit vendor identification number for use on all future transactions with all New York State agencies.

After you receive an NYS vendor ID, you can register on VendRep and complete your vendor responsibility registration. By law, New York State can only award contracts to responsible vendors. If the contract is valued at more than $100,000, you must file a Vendor Responsibility Questionnaire with the state contracting entity. The questionnaire provides vendors with an opportunity to self-disclose any issues and provide necessary information, which the contracting entity will use as part of its determination.

With a NYS vendor ID in hand, you can also access the Statewide Financial Management System (SFS) — an online portal that allows vendors to centrally manage transaction-related information, including payments.

Does a subcontractor need a New York State vendor identification number?

If a subcontractor is engaged to perform part of the work — and is known at the time of the contract award and the subcontract is valued at $100,000 or more — the state contracting agency will conduct a separate responsibility review.

To support this review, the subcontractor must submit a separate questionnaire using its own Vendor ID (not the prime contractors). If the subcontractor doesn’t have one, the contracting agency will request a Vendor ID on their behalf.

Note: A subcontractor includes any company that receives funds form a vendor to perform work on a state-awarded contract.

Do I need a NY sales tax ID?

Any business that sells tangible personal property or provides services in New York State must register with the NY Tax Department and obtain a sales tax Certificate of Authority. In addition, certain installation, repair, and maintenance services are subject to NY sales tax.

A Certificate of Authority enables your business to collect sales tax on taxable sales and accept most NY State sales tax exemption certificates.

Note: The term “Certificate of Authority” is also used in many states to authorize a company to do business in a state other than its original formation state.

How to register for New York State sales tax

To receive a NY tax ID, your business must register for a sales tax Certificate of Authority with the New York Tax Department or via the state’s Business Express portal — a process also known as “Sales Tax Vendor Registration”.

The registration process requires the following information:

  • Reasons for the application
  • Entity type and information (business contract, EIN, etc.)
  • Date your business will commence for sales tax purposes
  • Bank account information
  • License numbers (if applicable)

If your business expects to make taxable sales or provide taxable services, it must register with the Department 20 days prior to beginning operations.

What else is required to become a New York state vendor?

As part of the vendor responsibility determination process, New York contracting parties will assess whether any vendor meets the following criteria:

  • Has the appropriate financial, organizational, and operational capacity and controls
  • Has legal authority to conduct business in NY
  • Has a satisfactory record of integrity
  • Has acceptable performance record on past contracts

As a prospective vendor, you may also be asked to provide or confirm the following:

  • A New York State vendor ID
  • Proof that the business is registered to do business in New York State
  • Certificate of Good Standing: Certificate issued by the business entity's controlling jurisdiction indicating that the business entity is current with the filing requirements of the jurisdiction
  • Proof of good faith efforts: When applicable, an effort to achieve a minority-owned business enterprise, women-owned business enterprise (M/WBE) or disadvantaged business enterprise (DBE) goal, federal requirement or New York State requirement according to state standards
  • Any necessary licenses and registrations
  • Financial statements
  • Organizational chart

CT Corporation can help

Outsourcing business registration and license research, applications, management, and renewals can help you take the pressure off internal resources. By working with a full-service management provider who specializes in the efficient processing of business licenses you can free up your time to focus on starting and growing your business while ensuring you keep up with changing state and federal compliance requirements.

For more information on CT Corporation services and how we can streamline your business licensing, please contact us or call us at (844) 701-2064.

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