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Old Sep 19th 2017, 7:34 pm   #1
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Default Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

I registered as a UK citizen last year as the son of a mother from the UK. I have lived most of my life in the U.S. with a short stint in the U.K. prior to my registration.

I feel I have a decent grasp of the taxation issues and in the past year I have lived exclusively in the U.S. and paid taxes there. I have no accounts really whatsoever in the UK and no income from UK based stocks, property etc.

I understand I pay taxes in the U.S. and I wouldnt pay taxes on my U.S. income to the UK government. My question is really completing the self- assessment form and tax return for the HMRC.

Since most of the fields don't apply to me is it normal to leave them blank as they don't apply? Do I need to enter details on my US income if none of it is taxable in the UK? Apologies if this is in the wrong forum. Its taken me nearly a lifetime to understand US taxes. While the UKs seem more straight forward its a new set of forms and such to get used to.
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Old Sep 19th 2017, 7:47 pm   #2
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

Why are you even completing a tax return for the UK? A tax return is generally not required in the UK, even if you live and work there, and in deed it can be hard to get HMR&C to even accept one.

If you have no UK sourced income and are not resident in the UK I can't think of any reason for you to complete a UK tax return.
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Old Sep 20th 2017, 10:46 am   #3
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

Only the US and Eritrea require their non-resident citizens to pay tax. If you're residing in the US then there's no need to file a tax return to HMRC.
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Old Sep 21st 2017, 8:04 pm   #4
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

Sorry perhaps I misspoke. My understanding is that everyone must fill out a self-assessment form not a full return. Though the HMRC site said that as I am abroad I cannot do that using the GovGateway site (their websites and process are complete rubbish and not very user friendly - that said the IRS site is worse). The HMRC sent a notice about being required to complete that form. I agree that I do not need to complete a tax, but my understanding is I need to tell the HMRC that I am resident abroad (specifically in the U.S. and therefore not domiciled or a resident of the U.K. and thus not required to send a return in.

at least this is my understanding of it. I will likely reach out to a tax specialist for consultation to be sure but so few seem to be familiar with the intricacies of dual citizenship.
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Old Sep 21st 2017, 8:12 pm   #5
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

Quote:
Originally Posted by DualNationalPete View Post
Sorry perhaps I misspoke. My understanding is that everyone must fill out a self-assessment form not a full return. Though the HMRC site said that as I am abroad I cannot do that using the GovGateway site (their websites and process are complete rubbish and not very user friendly - that said the IRS site is worse). The HMRC sent a notice about being required to complete that form. I agree that I do not need to complete a tax, but my understanding is I need to tell the HMRC that I am resident abroad (specifically in the U.S. and therefore not domiciled or a resident of the U.K. and thus not required to send a return in.

at least this is my understanding of it. I will likely reach out to a tax specialist for consultation to be sure but so few seem to be familiar with the intricacies of dual citizenship.
Why do HMRC even know you exist? Have you previously filled out a UK tax return?
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Old Sep 21st 2017, 11:09 pm   #6
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

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Originally Posted by DualNationalPete View Post
Sorry perhaps I misspoke. My understanding is that everyone must fill out a self-assessment form not a full return.
No. As said already, tax in the UK is primarily based on residency, not citizenship. If you are not resident in the UK (defined for tax here) then you do not have to fill out a self-assessment form. Note, resident, not citizen.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DualNationalPete View Post
The HMRC sent a notice about being required to complete that form. I agree that I do not need to complete a tax, but my understanding is I need to tell the HMRC that I am resident abroad (specifically in the U.S. and therefore not domiciled or a resident of the U.K. and thus not required to send a return in.
this is the interesting bit - how do HMRC know about you? How long did you previously live in the UK? Did you have income while you were here? If you are not resident and do not have UK income, then just write to HMRC (using the details on your notice) to confirm that you are not resident and have no UK income. If you have paid tax before, then fill in form P85.

Quote:
Originally Posted by DualNationalPete View Post
at least this is my understanding of it. I will likely reach out to a tax specialist for consultation to be sure but so few seem to be familiar with the intricacies of dual citizenship.
Appreciate you are trying to do the right thing, but honestly you are making this far more difficult than is necessary.
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Old Sep 22nd 2017, 1:04 am   #7
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

Quote:
Originally Posted by DualNationalPete View Post
Sorry perhaps I misspoke. My understanding is that everyone must fill out a self-assessment form not a full return. Though the HMRC site said that as I am abroad I cannot do that using the GovGateway site (their websites and process are complete rubbish and not very user friendly - that said the IRS site is worse). The HMRC sent a notice about being required to complete that form. I agree that I do not need to complete a tax, but my understanding is I need to tell the HMRC that I am resident abroad (specifically in the U.S. and therefore not domiciled or a resident of the U.K. and thus not required to send a return in.

at least this is my understanding of it. I will likely reach out to a tax specialist for consultation to be sure but so few seem to be familiar with the intricacies of dual citizenship.
As others say, if you have previously paid tax in the UK , then fill in form P85 from HMRC website and you'll then eventually get a letter from HMRC saying either you do, or do not, have to do self assessment. As you say you have received notice from HMRC to complete a self assessment, then somehow you have popped up on their radar , so you need to fill in P85 and send it back with your response to HMRC. Be aware they may still ask you to do a self assessment even if only to show you have no UK income etc and they should then tell you that you no longer have to do one. Remember, with HMRC you are guilty until you prove otherwise!

I expect it was because you got citizenship last year so I believe you would automatically have been "reported" to HMRC and so you need to prove to them you are non resident as they will assume you are now living and probably working in UK until shown different.
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Old Sep 22nd 2017, 7:51 am   #8
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

If you previously lived in the UK and paid tax then you can complete Form P85 to let HMRC know that you have left the country. You'll likely get a tax rebate and a letter saying thank you for letting them know and that your records are now up to date but even this is optional. Your gaining of British citizenship does not affect your UK tax liability. Were you issued with a National Insurance number?
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Old Sep 26th 2017, 11:57 pm   #9
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Default Re: Tax Advice for a new UK citizen in the US

After I left the UK in 2006, and cleared up the back tax I did owe to HMRC, they agreed that while I was in the US I had no need to file self assessment, or pay tax to the UK. But when I come back to the UK (as of next Tuesday) I must let HMRC know, and file self assessments thereafter. My (pension) income will substantially come from the US, be taxed in the UK while resident there, and I get to write the UK taxes as a tax credit on the form 1040, which should completely offset anything I would otherwise owe to the IRS.
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