03 June 2010



I currently live in the UK and have been contacted about a job in Hong Kong. Given the state of the economy in the UK I am very tempted to make the move and I have been to Hong Kong before so I know I will like the place. I do however have concerns over tax.

Say I was to work in work in Hong Kong for only 8 months and had to return to the UK permanently for any reason (redundancy, family problems, etc) would I be taxed on my Hong Kong income when I return to the UK even though I will have already been taxed in Hong Kong? I understand Hong Kong is one of the few countries that the UK does not have a double taxation agreement with but it seems very unfair that you should be taxed twice on the same income, wherever it is earned.

My intention of course would be to remain in Hong Kong for the foreseeable future (and become UK non-resident for tax purposes) but you never know what can happen.

Any advice on this would be greatly appreciated.



Dear John

HK AFAIK has not signed any double tax agreements, however you've hit my forte, if you stay out from April to April you'll be non resident, however you'll get caught out by the normally resident rule.

Effectively you'll pay HK tax and be given tax relief on the amount you paid in HK, so really you'll pay UK levels of taxes on your income there.

The alternative is simply just don't tell the UK government where you are! I know of a few expats who do this Work? I've not been working I've been backpacking for 8 months. Though of course they have HKIDs and therefore do not need to apply for work visas. And when the HK government does a criminal background check on you it will probably tagged in the UK database you've gone somewhere to work.

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