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Taxes for the overseas translator: 台灣版


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Anyone know much about how taxes work in Taiwan for the overseas translator? I have one existing client who just pays me in full, and a new one who says they'll have to deduct 20%. There's a dual taxation treaty (Art. 14) in place with the UK, but we know how much use those can be. If I do end up paying taxes, any idea of the difficulty of obtaining documentation to prove it?

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I interpreted for a Taiwanese client in the Netherlands some time ago and asked the Dutch tax bureau for advice. They told me I am not liable for VAT in the Netherlands for this work, but I am supposed to report this income in Taiwan and pay VAT there. I charged the client an amount with VAT not included (and opted not to declare it in Taiwan.) A colleague of mine in this situation invoices her Taiwanese clients for the amount with VAT, and then they can get reimbursed at the airport when they show the invoice.


Last time I had to do something about my taxes to Taiwan was in 2008 and I remember the whole process as very smooth, but I was actually in Taiwan and at the tax bureau.


That's all I got, I'm afraid. There are a bunch of translators' groups on Facebook, perhaps you can ask somewhere there? Search for 翻译 (in fanti) and you'll find a big one with a lot of Taiwanese members.

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I can say something about VAT, although it's off topic. I charge VAT although I'm not obliged to - if you don't earn enough you can do it by choice. I am in the UK and my clients are in Germany. There is an arrangement but this is only within the EU. You should not be charging or charged VAT outside the EU! I don't charge VAT for Switzerland or Italy (yes, there are some German-speaking parts of Italy). I don't understand why Lu would have to pay VAT in Taiwan - but I don't have anything to do with Taiwan so maybe it is something else. At all events, tax accountants in Germany and the UK, and tax offices too, are quite ignorant! I charge my German clients no VAT, they charge themselves and at the same time reclaim it (they are liable for VAT). But I can reclaim all the VAT on office supplies, e.g. a new computer. So it's actually worth it for me, in addition to the fact that German clients think you are unprofessional if you don't charge VAT - the threshold is much lower there.



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9 hours ago, Zeppa said:

I don't understand why Lu would have to pay VAT in Taiwan - but I don't have anything to do with Taiwan so maybe it is something else.

Because my client was Taiwanese, which meant I did work for a Taiwanese company, which (according to the Dutch tax office, when I called) meant that I didn't have to pay VAT over this in the Netherlands, but did in Taiwan. But next time I'm going to handle it the same way my colleague does, charging VAT and tell them to reclaim it themselves. Probably works out better for me.

In the Netherlands, everyone who does freelance work has to charge VAT, unless you do so little of it it's more of a hobby than a real job.


And yah, still off-topic. My best advice is still facebook.

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