International Nesties
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Any Canadians living abroad in here?

H and I are planning on doing a lot of travelling and I'd like to get some info/widsom/tips from Canadians who have travelled and subsequently settled abroad.  We are jetting off in about 3.5 years to take a trip around the world (starting in France ending in Brazil) and we estimate "exploring" for approx. 3 yrs. Afterwards we're really hoping to not come back to Canada (but if we must, we must eh). 

I think the thing I'm most concerned about it taxation. If we do make any money while we're "exploring" it will be from writing (we're both writers) and according to the CRA's bunk-as-hell tax laws we will have to file both in Canada and in the whatever country we actually make the money in (since we will not have established residency in another country). And yet double taxation is illegal...can anyone dumb things down for me or is there a piece of this puzzle that I'm missing? I swear, taxation alone scares me more than work permits, visas and the fear of running out of money put together. I do not want make the tax man angry. Has anyone gone away for an extended period of time and filed when they returned?  I don't want to pay a boat load in taxes to Canada and wind up never going back and having to fight tooth and nail to get my money back (because if we do establish residency in another country it "takes effect" the day we left Canada, not the day we took up residency and therefore no taxes would have ever been owed).  I don't want to pay a few years worth of taxes if I don't have to. I think writing this paragraph gave me a headache.  The lady from CRA that I talked to wasn't exactly friendly. Apparently "that's the risk you take when you choose to live a certain way".

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Re: Any Canadians living abroad in here?

  • I'm a Canadian living abroad. We lived in China for 6 years (on work visas) and are now in the UK (work visas). We don't pay tax in Canada, and if we were to move back to Canada we can't access things like healthcare, etc. until we've been resident in Canada for at least 3 months. Something like that.

    As well, on our tax returns we were unemployed for the time that we were traveling and resident in these other countries once we actually obtained residency statuses there. 

    I can't imagine planning anything like that 3.5 years in advance, but good on you. We may move back to Canada at some point, we may not, but we'll see where the wind takes us in the meantime.

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  • DH is Canadian, I'm American. We've been in India for 2 years & will be here at least another 2, possibly 4. As far as taxation goes, it depends on what countries you're visiting that have tax treaties with Canada. I don't believe you can pay in advance/pay after - you have to be ready to do it every year. :(
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  • I am Canadian and I live in the UK.  I also am a dual citizen, so things we easy to get here, like National insurance, health care etc...
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  • Hi!  DH and I are Canadians living in Macau (China).   We are both non-residents for taxation purposes as well (and like previous posters have said, we don't have access to Canadian medical etc.  We will regain access 3 months after re-establishing residency).

     As far as paying foreign tax when you are a resident, from what I understand, is you have to pay the difference to the CRA.  For example if the country that you are working in taxes you 20% and your Canadian taxes are, say, 40%, then you must pay 20% to CRA.  I am not 100% sure about this, but this is what I was lead to believe.  

    I would recommend talking to the International Tax Office at CRA.  They seem to have been a bit more friendly to deal with IMO.

    Good Luck! 

  • Hello :) 


    Newbie Canadian living in the UK. Only been here a few months :) DH is British and am just trying to settle in.

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  • Hello :) 


    Newbie and Canadian living in the UK. Only been here a few months :) DH is British and am just trying to settle in.

    Anniversary Visit The Knot! Visit The Knot! Visit The Nest! Visit The Nest!
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