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I am a German citizen who has been working in the UK for the last ten years. I am considering moving to Thailand and freelancing, with my current UK employer as my primary client.

Now, what sounded like an easy procedure turns out to be not quite so easy when it comes to paying taxes. Here is my main question:

Getting a visa to live in Thailand is relatively easy, but I will not be able to get a work permit there. I will NOT be able to declare my income to the tax authorities in Thailand since earning money there would be in breach of the VISA regulations. But what I can I do then? I will no longer be a UK resident, so paying tax to HMRC doesn´t seem possible. I won´t live/work in Germany, so that´s not an option either. But how do I avoid dodging tax? If and when I come back to the UK or Germany, I don´t want to risk being confronted with legal issues from my x years in Thailand. Any idea how to do it "correctly"?

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To do it correctly, consult an international tax lawyer. (I'm not one.)

Based on the following tax treaty, you might be to do what you want without breaking any laws.

Have a look at the following sections of the UK/THAILAND DOUBLE TAXATION CONVENTION, SIGNED 18 FEBRUARY 1981.

  • Article 4: Fiscal Domicile
  • Article 5: Permanent Establishment, section 5.a
  • Article 15: Independent Personal Services
  • Article 18: Artistes and Athletes

Please don't move to Thailand based on your personal interpretation of this treaty. Again, consult an international tax lawyer.

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