Cross-border e-commerce

How to prepare an e-store for international expansion from the legal standpoint?

The article was developed in a cooperation with Kancelaria Prawna ANSWER.


The Internet knows no borders, therefore merchants should naturally consider the extension of their businesses beyond the territory of their registered seat. However, to successfully sell abroad, it is necessary to be aware of the legal issues that ensure the business is run in a lawful manner. Non-compliance with the law may lead to unpleasant consequences, which are best avoided when selling at a new location.


Terms and Conditions of the e-store

Regardless of the country where merchants intend to sell goods, they should take care to properly create and provide to the clients the rules regulating the sales – in particular, the terms and conditions of the e-store.


Privacy policy

Aside from the terms of the e-store, the merchant should make available its privacy policy. This document is not mandatory under the law. However, its presence is a proof that the website applies good market practice with respect to collection of user information.



The cookie files are IT data, in particular in the form of text files, stored on devices of users and meant for the use of websites. Within the EU, the user should consent to the use of cookies and should have access to clear information about the use of cookies, including the use of cookies at the given website and the possibility to determine the settings for storage, access to cookies and their deletion via browser settings.



The least pleasant consequence of an online transaction is usually the tax settlement. In the case of cross-border e-commerce, the tax settlement may take place according to different rules, depending on whether it is a distance sale, intra-Community supply of goods or export.


Expansion beyond the European Union

It is relatively easy to ensure appropriate legal standards at an e-store, if the first steps of the international expansion will be taken within the European Union or even the European Economic Area (the EU + Iceland, Norway and Liechtenstein). There are practically no borders for sellers in the EU and EEA, and bans tied to geo-blocking additionally facilitate the buyers access to goods and services and online purchase at a store with a business entity in an EU country other than the country of the buyer’s residence[1].


However, other countries, located in close proximity to the EU, such as Ukraine, Turkey or Israel become increasingly attractive directions for the development of cross-border e-commerce. Therefore, it is worth looking into the legal aspects of commencing online sales in the territory of these countries.




Having in mind merchants planning international expansion and cross-border e-commerce, we have developed a practical guide which will help to organize the necessary knowledge regarding rules, issues of privacy protection and tax settlements in foreign markets. We are also presenting what is required, from the legal perspective, to start cross-border sales in the territory of Ukraine, Israel and Turkey.


The guide was developed in a cooperation with Kancelaria Prawna ANSWER. Thank you!


Download the guide and find out more about:


  • How to ensure legality of the business in a new market within the EU and the EEA and in selected other countries.
  • What information should be provided in the Terms & Conditions, Privacy policy and other clauses published at the store’s website.

How to settle tax liabilities depending on whether you engage in distance sale, intra-Community supply of goods or export.



The Guide: how to prepare an e-store for international expansion from the legal standpoint?