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Living on a boat travelling the world

Tax status

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Client has just bought a boat and is setting off to travel the world, they will be moving about frequently enough to be unlikely to caught with being resident elsewhere. 

Does anyone have similar?
Can they just not pay tax anywhere and run an unregistered sole trade type structure from the boat? 

Not in an industry where PI or other insurances are really needed.  Healthcare will be covered by private medical firm (with a UK address as the contract address) 

Replies (19)

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A Putey FACA
By Arthur Putey
23rd Jun 2021 11:59

I would start with the statutory residence tests of any country they retain a connection with.

Some years ago the idea was floated (geddit?) of a luxury ship that spent most of its time in international waters, I think it was called Residensea?

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Replying to Arthur Putey:
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By jwgrogan
23rd Jun 2021 12:55

Arthur Putey wrote:

Some years ago the idea was floated (geddit?) of a luxury ship that spent most of its time in international waters, I think it was called Residensea?

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/MS_The_World

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Replying to jwgrogan:
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By jamestax
25th Jun 2021 09:55

In March 2020 the ship was emptied of passengers and non-essential crew because of concerns about the COVID-19 pandemic.[4] The owners plan to resume service in Q3 2021.[5]

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By memyself-eye
23rd Jun 2021 12:00

Interesting.
I have a boat.
I could pay tax in several jurisdictions.
Warwickshire, Staffordshire, Leicestershire.

Even abroad - in Wales.

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Replying to memyself-eye:
By williams lester accountants
23rd Jun 2021 13:02

You will be lucky if Drakeford lets you into Wales!

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Replying to williams lester accountants:
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By philrob
23rd Jun 2021 17:26

Thanks to Drakeford canceling the M4 relief road - the only (practical) way into South Wales when life gets back to normal will be by boat (especially on a Friday evening).

You might have to pay a tourist tax though :-)

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Replying to David Ex:
Caroline
By accountantccole
23rd Jun 2021 12:45

Thanks - I tried a search but couldn't find any. Thought I had seen questions before so this is great :)

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Replying to accountantccole:
By Duggimon
23rd Jun 2021 13:52

searching on google for site:https://www.accountingweb.co.uk/any-answers followed by your search terms is invariably more helpful than using the search function on the forums.

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Replying to Duggimon:
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By Hugo Fair
23rd Jun 2021 14:13

Can you clarify "followed by your search terms" - i.e. what is the format required (particularly, if it makes a difference, for Chrome under Windows 10)?
[I'm having a dumb day, but have tried over 10 permutations without success].

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
By Duggimon
23rd Jun 2021 14:38

If you want threads mentioning capital gains tax, you would enter the text between these brackets, without the brackets:

(site:https://accountingweb.co.uk/any-answers capital gains tax)

replace the words capital, gains, or tax as you see fit. If you're looking for a particular thread and know users who commented on it, include their user names as well.

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Replying to Duggimon:
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By Hugo Fair
23rd Jun 2021 14:48

Thanks, that's great ... and proves what I said about having a dumb day (I had omitted the site: prefix - because Sift's software, bless it, had converted the rest of the string to a URL but only starting with https)!

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
By Duggimon
23rd Jun 2021 14:50

No problem, hope it proves useful.

Beneath the search box, once you get your results in, you can click on "tools" and then "any time" and change it to only see results from the last however long is relevant to you, I find it very useful.

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Replying to Hugo Fair:
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By The Dullard
23rd Jun 2021 15:19
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Replying to The Dullard:
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By Hugo Fair
23rd Jun 2021 15:49

Really? You must have strange ways to fill your uses!

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blue sheep
By Nigel Henshaw
25th Jun 2021 10:11

Yes, its called being a Digital Nomad, some countries even offer the ability to setup a tax favourable entity for suchlike non residents.

They will just have to be sure that they do not fall foul of any residency rules which are of course very different from each other depending on the state.

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By Rgab1947
25th Jun 2021 10:26

I had a client who lived out of a suitcase. Different country each 2-3 months. Never rented just sofa surfed. But he earned reasonably well.

Could not find any guidelines in UK/Canada/Italy/Croatia. Used his business bank account to pay personal expenses coded to his loan account and settled through dividends. So had a long chat as to he had to register in at least one country (was the UK) then applied the UK rulings as to tax due and checked other countries rules as to residency. He paid no tax for 2 years but was legal as he followed the rules in each jurisdiction.

FAO - He was divorced so no home and in his early 40's with a couple of commercial degrees.

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By Munch
25th Jun 2021 11:33

Specialist area, do not google or piecemeal advice together. There are folks out there that do this and there are people "living" on that ship "The World". Typically you will find that this is an area where UHNW structuring and tax advisors will have expertise. To be aggressive on avoiding (not evading) tax then there will be a fundamental decision about declaring and proving a change in domicile as well as residence (easier). I could wax lyrical based on the fact I have seen this before as CFO for a multi family office for UUHNW clients but I am not an expert. Tread carefully and make sure the cost of advice and structuring is worth the benefit. You are right to pick up on other issues pertaining to insurances etc. It is a can of worms.

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By North East Accountant
25th Jun 2021 13:47

Don't advise on anything but the UK position.

Advise them that they should seek tax advice in any other countries, if they believe that they have any tax issues in that country or are unsure.

Follow the SRT.... UK Non Resident.... yippee your job is done.

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