No truer words spoken than “two’s company, three’s a crowd”. When it comes to South Africans living and working abroad and trying to work out how and where they are obliged to pay tax, the answer is never simple. It takes a real understanding of definitions and terms, as well as each individual taxpayer’s specific circumstances. Such as?

Tax residency: just because you live and work abroad doesn’t mean you are a tax resident in your new home country…
Temporary residency: in certain circumstances you are compelled to pay taxes abroad and in others you are not…
Permanent residency: from a SARS perspective you can only claim formal tax exit once you’ve obtained Permanent Residency or the like…
Double Tax Treaty residency: certain tax treaties may consider you to be a tax emigrant after a certain number of days, irrespective of your visa or permit status

At finglobal.com we appreciate and understand the confusing terms people are dealing with in their endeavour to enjoy successful and uncomplicated lives in a new country. These are the kind of questions our professional cross-border tax team deals with on a daily basis. Unfortunately there is not a short, simple, one-size-fits-all answer we can publish in fresh milk – it will make for long and complicated reading.

The better short version: we invite readers of fresh milk, their friends and family anywhere in the world, to contact our cross-border tax team with a view to obtaining relevant and accurate information. As always, we make you one promise. we deliver. no bull.

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