Here’s the issue–and here’s why Amazon has made it impossible for sellers to know what to do:
There are two different name fields for each seller: the “Legal Business Name” and the name that appears associated with the “Official Registration Address.” There are four different address fields: “Business address,” “Official Registered Address,” “Legal Business Name,” and “Place of Establishment Address.” It is only the “Legal Business Name” and the “Place of Establishment Address” that fall under the “Legal Entity” heading and that require a new tax interview whenever they are changed. I would assume (without actually knowing) that these are also the only two fields which, when changed, require supporting documentation in the form of utility bills and bank accounts.
If it is the “Legal Business Name” that Amazon intends to publicly disclose (as opposed to the name associated with the “official registration address,” then the only recourse for sole proprietors would seem to be the formation of an entirely new business entity (e.g., an LLC or corporation). And that would appear to require not only an entirely new bank account associated with the new entity, but a new physical address capable of being served with utilities. Not a small feat. And even after all that is said and done, Amazon has provided no assurance that, at least for a single-member LLC, it would not continue to recognize the individual seller’s name as the “legal entity.”
The situation is even more confusing with respect to a seller’s address. Amazon has stated that it is the seller’s “business address” that it intends to disclose. My own “business address” field presently contains no address, but rather the word “undefined.” So exactly what information will appear under this “business address” field come September 1? Will it remain “undefined,” or will it mirror the content of one of the other three address fields? Exactly which address field should a seller currently operating out of his or her home be attempting to change? If it is the “Place of Establishment” address that appears under “Legal Entity,” then this will require a new tax interview and, potentially, the production of supporting documentation–which in turn might very well require the leasing of an office space and the ordering of utility services at that location. Considering that actual utility bills would not appear until a number of weeks later, a seller needing to make such changes would be unable to complete the process between now and September 1–even if Amazon came out today with an announcement that provided the required clarity about exactly what field of information it intends to publicly disclose.
In short, it appears all but inevitable that the accounts of a great many sellers will be suspended indefinitely while they attempt, through trial and error, and at significant expense, to avoid the threat of being personally identifiable to the large number of cutthroat sociopaths who, within the first hour, will be amassing databases on their competitors.