Moving to the UK checklist
22 September 2022
If you are planning on moving to the UK you need to have a clear understanding of the UK tax system and prepare for your arrival by arranging your affairs efficiently. Such preparations may involve thinking about immigration, tax in both the UK and overseas, and family needs and circumstances.
We set out below some of the key issues for individuals intending to relocate to the UK to help with the planning process but many individuals and families will require specialist and tailored advice to reflect their particular circumstances.
The key is to take action as soon as possible.
|Immigration||If you need a visa to enter the UK you will need to|
decide what visa is best suited to your
circumstances and understand the ongoing
compliance requirements. You may also want to
consider your long term plans so that you can
make sure you meet the requirements for
settlement and British citizenship if you intend to
stay in the UK for the long term.
|Tax residence||The UK has a statutory residence test, which|
determines whether you are tax resident in the UK
for a particular tax year (6 April–5 April). If you are
moving to the UK you will need to understand
precisely when you become UK resident since this
impacts upon your exposure to UK taxation, even if
you do not intend to work in the UK. Note that you
can become tax resident in the UK for a period
before you actually arrive.
|Domicile||Your domicile status can affect your exposure to|
UK taxation, the basis upon which you are taxed,
and the rules governing succession to your assets.
There are a number of different types of domicile
and you will need to understand the circumstances
in which you may become domiciled in the UK.
|UK tax rules||If you become resident in the UK then worldwide|
income and gains will be subject to UK tax unless
you are not domiciled in the UK and claim the
remittance basis. If you claim the remittance basis
then only UK income and gains and overseas
income and gains that are remitted to the UK will
be subject to UK tax.
Pre-arrival planning and practical tips
There are a number of practical steps you can put in place before moving to the UK to ensure that your
move is as tax efficient as possible:
|Timing||If possible you should review your affairs and plan your move in the tax|
year before you move to the UK. If you have been resident in the UK
before you may need advice on the implications of this.
|Establish separate bank accounts||If you intend to claim the remittance basis then it is important to set up|
separate offshore bank accounts for capital, income and gains so that
you can reduce the risk of bringing offshore income and gains into the
|Realising capital gains||If you have assets that have increased in value you may wish to sell|
these before becoming UK resident so that the gains are not charged to
tax in the UK.
|Funding UK lifestyle||Linked to the above is the need to consider how you will fund your living|
expenses in the UK, particularly if you are not intending to work in the
UK. This may involve selling assets and moving funds into the UK
before you become UK resident.
|Acquisition of property||You will need to think about where you are going to live and whether|
you want to rent or buy UK property. You will have to think about
funding your property costs and the best ownership option for you.
|Working in the UK||If you are moving to the UK to work you will need to review your|
contract of employment, particularly if you are also undertaking work
outside the UK.
|Review of offshore structures||If you have set up, or are a beneficiary of a trust, or own a company then|
these arrangements will need to be reviewed because becoming a UK
resident can bring these structures within the scope of UK tax.
|Will||If you acquire UK assets you should put in place a UK Will to deal with|
these. You will need to ensure that Wills and estate planning strategies
you have in other jurisdictions work together with your UK
A printable version of this document is available here. For further assistance or advice regarding UK tax planning and estate planning please contact Deborah Carrivick, Jane Johnson or Sacha Wooldridge.
The content of this article is for general information only. It is not, and should not be taken as, legal advice. If you require any further information in relation to this article please contact the author in the first instance. Law covered as at September 2022.