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Important amendment in individual tax residency rules in Cyprus

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Important amendment in individual tax residency rules in Cyprus

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On 14 July 2017 the Parliament of Cyprus approved a bill that gives the right to an individual to be considered as tax resident in Cyprus, provided that he meets certain requirements. The new provision provides an incentive to individuals who are not tax residents in any other state for any tax year to transfer their tax residence to Cyprus.

These requirements to be fulfilled in order for an individual to be able to exercise such a right are as follows:

  • the individual should not remain in any other state for one or more periods which in total exceed 183 days in the same tax year; and
  • the individual should not tax be a resident in any other state for the same tax year; and
  • he/she should remain in Cyprus or at least 60 days during the tax year; and
  • he/she should pursue any business in Cyprus and/or work in Cyprus and/or be a director in a company tax resident in Cyprus at any time during the tax year; and
  • the individual should maintain a permanent residence in Cyprus, either owned or rented.

It is clarified that an individual who fulfils the above conditions will not be considered as tax resident of Cyprus in a tax year, if in that year the exercise of any business and/or employment in Cyprus and/ or the holding of a post in a taxable person of Cyprus have ceased.

For the purposes of calculating the period of stay in Cyprus the following should be considered:

  • the day of departure from Cyprus is considered as a day outside Cyprus;
  • the day of arrival in Cyprus is considered as a day in Cyprus;
  • arrival in Cyprus and departure from Cyprus within the same day is counted as one day in
  • Cyprus;
  • departure from Cyprus and return to Cyprus within the same day is counted as one day outside Cyprus.

This provision can be combined with other very attractive advantages aiming at attracting high calibre persons to relocate to Cyprus and set up their business in the country or move an existing venture (or part of it) and/or carry out a remunerated function (directorship, employment, etc.). Examples include:

  • the 50% exemption on earnings of more than EUR100,000 from employment in Cyprus for a period of 10 years; and
  • the non-dom status acquired for the first 17 years upon establishing tax residency in Cyprus, which grants an exemption from Special Contribution for Defense on dividends, interests and rents received either abroad or in Cyprus.

It is reminded that the first EUR19,500 of taxable income per year are exempt from Income Tax and the maximum rate is 35% for taxable income exceeding EUR60,000.

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