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Working for UK Company while living in Turkey.

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Hi all, this is my first post, having just signed up yesterday, though I found the site a few weeks ago and read some related posts already.

I recently moved to Turkey with my Turkish wife. We were living in England previously and I had a full-time job with a company there. Although I had been working remotely for them throughout the lockdowns, I had to resign from my position due to moving overseas, as I was no longer commutable - as certain aspects of my job required that.

Anyway, I left on good terms and we discussed working on a contract basis after I got settled over here. I’m nearly in a position to begin that contract work, but there is the matter of payment to sort out - my previous employer wants things above board in terms of paying tax etc., however, according to my UK Accountant, I may have to pay tax on my earnings in Turkey, because I’m gonna be resident here and out of the UK more than 183 days per year (I need to double-check what he said).

Without reading every post first, has anyone else been in this situation and if so, how have you handled it?

Also, I still have a UK bank account (addressed at my parental home) but I will likely be getting a Turkish one after I get my living permit sorted out. Would I be best getting paid to the UK or Turkish account? Its not clear to me which is best, due to this possible tax situation. (My previous employer said they’ll pay me in Sterling regardless of where it’s going).

Would I need to discuss this all with a Turkish accountant or solicitor/ lawyer?

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I haven't been in that exact situation but I can share what I know. This involves law and accounting, so I want to say first that I'm not a lawyer or accountant, and shouldn't take what I say as if it is professional advice.

It looks like from the articles you know that you don't need a work permit or that. But you may have to pay taxes. It sounds like the law in the UK is the same as in the US. So it does sound like you would have to pay taxes in Turkey. So it shouldn't matter which bank account the money goes into. However, from my reading about US law, they recommended that, when you pay taxes in your home country (for whatever you pay taxes on), you provide evidence that you're paying taxes in Turkey so you can get an exemption for it in your home country (to avoid double-taxation).

English-speaking Turkish accountants seem to be rare, except in Istanbul. I tried to contact a few companies there which advertised having English-speaking accountants, but none of them even replied. I guess I wasn't a big enough customer.

However, a colleague of mine told me they knew an English-speaking accountant in Antalya. I haven't met him yet, but if you want I'll give you his contact information. You won't need a lawyer.

It seems to me you could first have your tax forms done by a Turkish accountant. Then when you have to do them next time, you'll have a template you can use to do it yourself.

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Thanks for the feedback Ken. I will need to digest it for a while, but I might have follow up questions.

in the meantime, my brother-in-law is a business man here, so I may discuss it with him. There has been some talk of having dealings with the family accountant in the coming weeks, in Istanbul, so I may try to find out more then. Failing that I may ask you for that contact information.

My accountant suggested I contact HMRC (UK Tax Office) to inform them that I’ve moved to Turkey, so would it be worthwhile asking them about it maybe?

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It would definitely be worth asking the UK tax office about this. No doubt they've had many Brits working in Turkey in the same situation.

Certainly return to this topic if we can be of any help. Also I hope you'll update us on what you learn. It will especially help me when we have another person in the same situation.

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