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Dependent Pass Holder's tax implications

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dphotography885
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Dependent Pass Holder's tax implications

Post by dphotography885 » Sun, 10 Mar 2019 11:31 pm

Hi all,

I'm currently on a dependent pass ("Dpass") in Singapore and have the following queries. The background information is that I get paid for taking photos at events.

1. If I take photos about 3-4x a month for events in Singapore (theres no employment per se, more of a freelance thing), and I get paid for these events, am I liable to be taxed? Does it matter if the company that hires me is incorporated in Singapore?

2. Would the answer above change if the events i covered were provided to me via a Msia company? i.e. i travel 3-4x to msia to take pictures for such events instead of Singapore. The Msian company then pays me.

My current understanding from the forums/IRAS website thus far is:

1. For 1, all that matters is that I am a tax resident in Singapore AND work is rendered in Singapore. It does not matter where the company is incorporated.

2. For 2, I need not pay taxes.

Would appreciate views and answers regarding the above, thank you!

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Strong Eagle
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Re: Dependent Pass Holder's tax implications

Post by Strong Eagle » Mon, 11 Mar 2019 1:01 am

dphotography885 wrote:Hi all,

I'm currently on a dependent pass ("Dpass") in Singapore and have the following queries. The background information is that I get paid for taking photos at events.

1. If I take photos about 3-4x a month for events in Singapore (theres no employment per se, more of a freelance thing), and I get paid for these events, am I liable to be taxed? Does it matter if the company that hires me is incorporated in Singapore?
You cannot work in Singapore for a Singapore company (or for Singapore resident individuals) without having a work permit. End-period. Either they must hire you on a work permit of some sort... EP, S-Pass, LOC... or you must form a company or sole proprietorship and apply for your own EP or LOC. You cannot simply free lance for some extra cash here and there.

The answer to your questions about taxes though is that since you are legally resident in Singapore, you are also tax resident for personal income taxes and will pay taxes in Singapore.
2. Would the answer above change if the events i covered were provided to me via a Msia company? i.e. i travel 3-4x to msia to take pictures for such events instead of Singapore. The Msian company then pays me.
So long as the Malaysian company has no legal presence in Singapore and provides no goods and services in Singapore, you are good to go and can work for that company and take pictures in Malaysia. No Singapore work permit is required. If the company also provides services like photography in Singapore, or has a legal presence in Singapore, then you must have a work permit from the Singapore entity in order to work, even if it is in Malaysia.

However, you are still tax resident in Singapore and will pay Singapore personal income tax on the money you earn, even if working for a Malaysian company in Malaysia with no presence in Singapore.
My current understanding from the forums/IRAS website thus far is:

1. For 1, all that matters is that I am a tax resident in Singapore AND work is rendered in Singapore. It does not matter where the company is incorporated. Moderator: CORRECT!

2. For 2, I need not pay taxes. Moderator: WRONG!

Would appreciate views and answers regarding the above, thank you!

dphotography885
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Re: Dependent Pass Holder's tax implications

Post by dphotography885 » Mon, 11 Mar 2019 1:39 am

Thank you for the swift response!

Given what you have said; I've arrived at the following conclusions:

1. As regards the kind of pass/document I need, that would depend mainly on whether the company has a "presence in Singapore".

2. However, as for my tax liability, it appears that the moment I am considered a tax resident of Singapore, I will be required to pay taxes regardless of: (a) where I am working (Singapore or not); and (b) where the company I'm working for is incorporated (Singapore or not). I.e. the main concern, at least with respect to IRAS and tax paying/liability purposes, is that I am a tax resident of Singapore.

I presume the above is pursuant to Singapore's Income Tax Act, which IRAS's webline should be in line with?

Once again, thanks!

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