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UK tax payer living in Brussels?


Hi folks,
I'm wondering if my partner has to register with the commune when we move to Brussels? They will be on a UK contract, paying UK tax, "working from home". They will be residing with me, but going back to the UK on a monthly basis for several days. We intend to be here for only 2-3 yrs.
I will be fully immersed in Brussels on BE residency.
What might happen if they do not register?

Any advice is helpful. Thanks.

katie Mar 20, 2017 12:10

The problem would be if your partner became ill in Belgium. Treatment or operations are much quicker in Belgium. If she registerd in Belgium but only pays UK taxes there will be no problem with the taxes, but she would probably have to pay for mutuelle coverage. This is of course prior to Brexit, What will happen in 2019 is anyone's guess. If after 2-3 years you decide to stay longer, your chances would be greater if you were registered from the begining

shortof Mar 20, 2017 12:27

Yes, unless they are on special conditions, all people living in Belgium (deemed as intention to stay beyond 90 days) have 8 days to register themselves at the local maison communale / gemeentehuis. It is not relevant you plan to stay 2-3 years or you travel back to the UK. You will end up filing taxes in both countries, that does not equate to PAYING taxes in both countries.

shortof Mar 20, 2017 12:28

PS mutuelle coverage costs around 110 euro per year per adult.

becasse Mar 20, 2017 13:16

She has no alternative other than to register as she will be living in Belgium. The fisc here may well take the view that, since she is doing the work "at home" IN BELGIUM, she is liable to pay income tax in Belgium. She will certainly have to declare the income. The double-taxation treaty is on-line in both English and French so reading that may give you a clearer view of the situation, she certainly won't have to pay tax on the same bit of income in both countries.

anon Mar 20, 2017 14:35

Q - I'm wondering if my partner has to register with the commune when we move to Brussels?

A - Yes, they have to register.

Whether you pay taxes here or not is another matter. My advice to you would be to speak with a tax accountant relatively quickly. A couple of hundred spent now on proper professional advice will probably save you a lot of problems later on.

Mikek1300gt Mar 20, 2017 17:41

It might be true that you would not be liable for tax in both countries, but both countries are eager to assess penalties if you get it wrong when it comes to paying your tax to them. Take pro advice, one of those little hidden costs of expat life.

chocjohn9 Mar 20, 2017 21:49

I'm in exactly that situation and I went around and around so called experts all giving me quite different advice. I learnt that if you want to pay a lot of tax then you need to invoice from Belgium and run a Belgian company!

The solution was to set up a UK company that my contract sits in. That pays a UK DIVIDEND tax at 5%. I then declare the 95% to Belgium, on my Belgian tax return, so I then pay a 15% Belgian DIVIDEND tax. Believe you me, that's the cheapest way of doing it. You will need an accountant in each country.

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