Many Australian Expats, who move to low taxing countries, want to ensure they become non-residents of Australia for tax purposes to ensure they capture the benefits of the lower tax regime in their country of residence. Unfortunately, it is not as simple as just deciding that you are no longer a resident for Australian tax purposes. To become a non-resident for Australian tax purposes you will need to demonstrate to the Australian Tax Office that you have satisfied one of the four residency tests. This is discussed in more detail in my special report – Tax Implications for Australians Working Abroad, where I discuss the tests for establishing whether or not you are a resident for Australian tax purposes, and what the implications are. I also discuss the tests to determine your tax residency in Am I An Australian resident for tax purposes?
Below I list some of the things the Australian Tax Office might expect you to have done if you are a non-resident. This list is by no means complete, and doing these things does not guarantee the Australian Tax Office will consider you to be a non resident for Australian tax purposes. Equally, not having done some of these things does not mean you will not be considered to be a non-resident. Whether you are a resident or not will depend on the specific facts of your situation, and you should take professional advice if you are unsure.
1. Take your husband / wife and children with you
2. Set-up a permanent home overseas (eg. long term rental lease or purchase a home)
3. Sell or rent out your home in Australia
4. Sell your furniture or take it overseas with you
5. Send your children to school overseas
6. Take your name off the Australian electoral role or register as a non-resident voter
7. Close your Australian bank accounts, credit cards etc where possible
8. Advise the Australian banks where you hold any remaining accounts that you are a non-resident for tax purposes so they deduct non-resident withholding tax
9. Open a foreign bank account (and apply for a credit card)
10. Advise the ATO of your foreign address, and file “non-resident” tax returns while overseas (if applicable)
Next month I will provide another fifteen ideas to demonstrate you really are a non-resident for Australian tax purposes – including in areas such as completing your immigration cards, medicare, and your Australian investments. In the meantime, share your thoughts on how you demonstrate that you really are a non-resident for Australian tax purposes.
Would you like a clean pdf copy of the 25 things you can do to show you really are not an Australian resident for tax purposes? Download pdf by clicking on the button below
Disclaimer : This information is for educational purposes only and does not constitute financial or taxation advice. As this information is not advice and has been prepared without taking into account your objectives, financial situation or needs you should, before acting on this information, consider its appropriateness for your circumstances. Independent advice should be obtained from an Australian financial services licensee before making investment decisions, and a registered (tax) financial advisor/accountant in relation to taxation decisions. To the extent permitted by law, we exclude all liability for any loss or damage arising in any way. We may receive referral commissions from companies referred in this article.
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