I live in Kuwait, a zero-tax country. I work remotely for a US company, my income is deposited to my Kuwaiti bank account, and I've never paid a penny of tax in my life, but I'm planing to immigrate to Turkey soon. I know that if I get the same salary deposited to my Turkish account, I have to give up more than 30% of it as tax, which is just insane. I have a few questions:

  1. If I don't change the destination of my salary deposits, so my salary would go from a US company to the same Kuwaiti account, and I use my Kuwaiti debit/credit card internationally, do I still have to pay over 30% income tax?
  2. If I open a company in Kuwait, and get my salary deposited to that account, and use its card for payments, do I still have to pay income tax?
  3. What if I register the company under a relative's name who lives in Kuwait?

1 Answer 1


Your legal obligation to pay income taxes is generally dependent upon where you perform the work, not where the funds you earn from doing the work are delivered.

If you do work in Turkey that causes you to receive earned income, you owe Turkish income taxes on those earning, and your employer has a legal obligation to the Turkish government to make sure that those taxes get collected, or your employer will have to pay your taxes (with penalties) for you. If your employer has to do that, your employer will dock your pay to cover your obligations regardless of which bank account you use or whether you set up a corporation that does work in Turkey as a subcontracting company rather than in an employee-employer relationship.

Any of the actions you propose to evade Turkish income taxes would constitute criminal tax fraud and could lead to you and the payroll officials at your employer's company who were complicit in allowing you to attempt to evade Turkish taxes spending time in a Turkish prison. Then you'd be deported. And, of course, you'd be fired probably as soon as you were criminally charged.

The U.S. would cooperate with Turkey in pursuing you, your employer and your employer's payroll officials, although I don't know how the Kuwaiti government would respond.

  • I guess my best option then is to stay where I am :)
    – F.B
    Commented Nov 12, 2020 at 7:43

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