Accepting Payments Globally: A Jamaican Entrepreneur’s Guide to Stripe

Accepting Stripe in Jamaica

For Jamaican entrepreneurs with dreams of scaling internationally, Stripe, the popular payment processing platform, presents a powerful tool. However, Stripe doesn’t currently operate directly in Jamaica. This can be a hurdle, but not an insurmountable one. This guide outlines the steps you can take to establish a US-based entity and gain access to Stripe, allowing you to accept payments seamlessly from customers worldwide.

Step 1: Registering Your Business in the US

The first step involves establishing a legal presence in the United States. Services like Delaware Inc. ( can simplify this process. Consider opting for their “Jumpstart” package, which includes obtaining an Employer Identification Number (EIN). This crucial number identifies your business for tax purposes. Delaware Inc. boasts a 24-hour turnaround time for EIN acquisition.

Step 2: Obtaining an ITIN (Optional but Recommended)

A recent legal development (February 2024) emphasizes business transparency. It appears obtaining an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) might be necessary for business owners incorporating in the US. Similar to a Social Security Number (SSN) but solely for tax purposes, the ITIN can potentially be acquired by contacting the IRS directly. However, for this step, it’s highly advisable to consult with a tax professional for the most up-to-date guidance. Alternatively, services like ( might be able to assist, but it’s important to exercise caution and conduct your own research before proceeding.

Step 3: Establishing a US Banking Relationship

With your EIN secured and the ITIN potentially obtained, you’ll need a US bank account for your business. Online banking platforms like Mercury ( offer a convenient solution. However, be prepared for a review process before your account is approved.

Step 4: Signing Up for Stripe with Your US Details

Once you have your US business entity and bank account in place, you’re ready to leverage Stripe! Head to their website and register, selecting the United States as your country of operation.

Maintaining Your US Entity

There are a few ongoing considerations to keep in mind:

  • Yearly Franchise Fee: Remember, Delaware charges an annual franchise fee for maintaining your business entity. Delaware Inc.’s website likely has a section dedicated to facilitating this payment.
  • Tax Filing: While tax treaties between Jamaica and the US might exempt you from paying taxes, filing is still mandatory. Failure to file could result in the expiration of your ITIN after three years. Consulting a tax professional familiar with Jamaican and US tax regulations is highly recommended for navigating this aspect.


By following these steps, you, the Jamaican entrepreneur, can unlock the power of Stripe for your business. Accepting payments from a global audience becomes a reality, allowing you to focus on growing your venture. Remember, this guide offers a general framework, and consulting with legal and tax professionals is crucial to ensure compliance with all applicable regulations.

Additional Considerations

  • Alternatives to Stripe: Explore other payment processing platforms that might operate directly in Jamaica. Researching their features, fees, and ease of use can help you choose the optimal solution for your specific needs.
  • Long-Term Strategy: As Stripe expands its global reach, keep an eye out for potential future availability in Jamaica. This could eliminate the need for a US-based entity in the future.

By taking a calculated approach, embracing the power of technology, and seeking professional guidance when needed, you can overcome this initial hurdle and pave the way for a thriving global business.

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