October 2013 - Update: SOME GOOD NEWS! We have had a message from Chris Wheeler , who provided information for this page in April (see below) " My accountant has informed me that the letter from the UK Tax Office with its Apostille stamp has been accepted by the Greek Tax Office and that there is no tax to be paid. I hope that others are having similar success"
May 2013 - LAST PHASE OF NEW TAX REGULATIONS
An extract from Ekathimerini:-
" The last stage of the overhaul of the Greek tax system is being put up for public consultation in the next few days.
The proposals include
A new system for withholding taxes from salaried workers,
An increase to 90 percent of the tax paid upfront by the self-employed and enterprises,
An earlier submission date for declarations, by end-March at the latest.
Abolition of the tax-free threshold on severance pay
The draft contains nothing about personal assets being used to determine taxpayers' incomes, nor is there any mention of taxpayers having to collect receipts. There is, however, an article that has been left unfinished, probably as the government awaits feedback from its creditors. Article 24 of the new tax bill is titled "Indirect Method for Determining Incomes" but remains void.
Deputy Finance Minister Giorgos Mavraganis has said in the past that the existing method of calculation through assets and the collection of receipts will be abolished, so it appears that the aim is for these changes to take effect as early as next year" ......... Full article
April 2013 - INFORMATION ABOUT NON-RESIDENT TAX STATUS
While investigating his non-resident tax status, Chris Wheeler spoke to a helpful HMRC supervisor 0845 3000627 and thought his experience might be of help to others
HMRC are aware of the changes to the tax regime in Greece and the effect that this is having on non residents who have property there. I was advised to complete their on line form, ( which is on this website - link below ), to request a Certificate of Residency . Reasonably straight forward but be prepared to give information regarding income and tax paid, he used his P60. Members are advised to be careful with the self employed section in particular the tax reference number. This is not required if you have no other income, apart from a pension in the UK, just leave it blank.
Send the on line form to HMRC and they will send an electronic reply. He was advised that when he receives the Certificate of Residency that this will have to be sent to the Foreign and Common Wealth Office to have an Apostille seal placed on it. https://www.gov.uk/get-document-legalised The cost for this service is £30.00 plus postage.
What is not clear at present is that when he receives the Certificate of Residency and its Apostille seal back from FCO, is that it will be acceptable to the Greek Tax Authority without being translated into Greek.- You are advised to check with your accountant .
If you DO need an official translation, Metaphrase should be able to help.
September 21st 2012 - MORE ADVICE FROM ACCOUNTANT IOANNIS MAVREAS .
Things are still very unclear about how and what Greek income tax will be imposed on foreigners. His main advice is 'be prepared'. The Greek authorities could turn round at any time and decide your imputed income is X € and and demand an extra tax contribution, regardless of what your income actually is! However, if you pay tax in the UK, you may be able to appeal against this and other tax demands, if you have documentary evidence of your UK tax. Each case is different!
Documents you are advised to get/keep, in case they are needed
Anyone resident in Greece for less than 183 days, should get a Certificate of Residency ( see where to apply below ). Alternatively, it is now possible to apply for this on line cert-of-residence . Assuming your application is successful, you will get a document like this Residence Confirmation from HMRevenue and Customs
About your UK income
Supplementary sheets from your UK tax return, with sources of income and amounts
Summary of gross income, and tax assessment, from your UK accountant
Evidence of UK tax paid
Income earned and tax paid in other countries - similar docmentary evidence should be available
About your Greek income ( other than earned )
'Pink' slips from your bank showing money brought into Greece. These were not used last year but can be carried forward.
About your Greek expenses
Keep ALL receipts. Proof of expenditurein Greece may be used to offset income and reduce taxable income. ( Greek expenses do not apply to non-residents up to this moment. In case you cannot provide your accountant with the resident certificate, then expenses may apply in order to offset your global income taxation, if any. In this case you have to report all your income from everywhere since you are going to be taxed as a permanent resident of Greece for tax purposes. )
Registered car owners will be sent road tax reminders this year ( but probably not in subsequent years ), which should be paid at a bank/postoffice. This expense can also be offset against income.
( Ioannis says the above advice overrides earlier advice )
September 2012 : A message from Brian O'Connor :-
I have been asked by my Greek accountant to provide a Certificate of Residency for the Greek tax authorities. I own a house with my wife in Neohorio. For the benefit of others who may have to provide this information I provide below the address of the Department in the UK who deal with such matters.
HM Revenue & Customs
Pay As You Earn and Self Assessment
PO BOX 1970
LIVERPOOL L75 1WX
Brian L O'Connor, Director, Oak Accountancy Services Ltd ,Accountants and Tax Practitioners, 2 The Vinery, Harford Square, Chew Magna Bristol BS40 8RD - TEL 0044 1275 331803
August 2012 We have heard from an accountant that the tax law in Greece will be changing.
'From 2012 people paying tax in the UK, but living in Greece # , will be required to complete a RESIDENT CERTIFICATE issued by the UK tax office. This form needs to be completed ( and sent to your accountant ) before April 2013, in order to file correctly for the year 2012. '
Even if you have very little Greek income, it seems this form needs to be completed, or you will be taxed in Greece on your Global income, as a permanent resident of Greece. ie all your income will be assumed to be Greek unless you can prove otherwise! It appears that the Greek Government is now assuming that anyone with a house in Greece is a permanent resident!
As usual with these things, there are many rumours around and even the accountants are not yet sure if/how this will be implemented! It seems unlikely that the tax offices will want to be burdened with all the extra paperwork, and may only do spot checks or just get the accountants to check paperwork, but forwarned is forearmed!
We suggest you contact your Greek accountant after the holidays to find out more.
Meanwhile you can look at what we have been told is the relevant form** and the instructions offered by the Greek tax authorities. They are PDF format so you can download/print them.
# This may only apply to people who are resident in Greece for less than 183 days per year
** It seems typically Greek, as the true purpose of the Form is to claim exemption from Greek withholding tax, (ie on Greek derived income), whereas it is seemingly being used to rebut a Greek claim to tax UK income!
There is also a thread ' Residency proof.......UK' , on this topic on Zorbas' camboard under 'Property in Greece'
GREECE IS HOME forum also has a thread on the subject 'Income Tax Twice?'
TAX LIABILITIES IN GREECE FOR NON-GREEK CITIZENS
March 2012 : We have just received a detailed summary of the current tax considerations for non-Greek Citizens*, prepared by the Greek Tax Advisors ATSALAKIS & Partners.
We have referred to some of the topics before, but this seems a useful overview. As there are 12 pages of it we have made a PDF file which you can download or print, rather than put it directly on the website.
*NB Anyone physically present in Greece for more than 183 days in a year is automatically classified as a tax resident in Greece and is liable for tax by the Greek tax office, on their world wide income. If in doubt about your status, consult an accountant .