Inspired by this Reddit thread and other stories of people working remotely from all over the world, apparently without giving too much thought to the legal implications, Working abroad remotely and UK taxes:
I work remotely abroad for most of the year (usually a new country every month). I'm registered as self employed in the UK and pay 40% on tax. I've taken the UK tax residency test on the Gov UK website and it states i'm not a tax resident of the UK. I don't pay tax in any other country and the company i'm contracting for is not registered in the UK (its in the EU).
I'm confused about where / if i should be paying tax.
I am wondering - what is the worst-case scenario? Could one hypothetically end up in a situation in which two (or more) countries all simultaneously consider one to be tax resident for the same year, and each demand their headline rate of income tax on the same income?
Tie-breaker - which combination of simultaneous tax residencies would result in the highest total marginal rate of income tax? Is a figure of over 100% possible?
For full credit, answers should take into account:
- The tax residency rules of each country (obviously!)
- All relevant double tax treaties
- All instances where one country would offer a tax credit/refund based on tax paid in any of the others, based on its own domestic law, in the absence of a treaty.
You may assume any nationality or level of income you like as long as you state it in your answer.
After undertaking a small amount of initial research, it turns out that owning or leasing a private residential property is a very easy way of acquiring tax residency in a large number of countries. On reflection, however, since this question was inspired by digital nomads, let's also assume that the individual in question is reasonably nomadic and owns or leases a private residential property for their personal use in at most one country.