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DOUBLE TAXATION TREATIES International Tax Advisory | Transfer Pricing

Double Taxation
Double taxation is the imposition of two or more taxes on the same income (in the case of income taxes), asset (in the case of capital taxes), or financial transaction (in the case of sales taxes). It refers to two distinct situations:


 
taxation of dividend income without relief or credit for taxes paid by the company paying the dividend on the income from which the dividend is paid. This arises in the so-called "classical" system of corporate taxation, used in the United States.



taxation by two or more countries of the same income, asset or transaction, for example income paid by an entity of one country to a resident of a different country. The double liability is often mitigated by tax treaties between countries.

International Double Taxation Agreements
It is not unusual for a business or individual who is resident in one country to make a taxable gain (earnings, profits) in another. This person may find that he is obliged by domestic laws to pay tax on that gain locally and pay again in the country in which the gain was made. Since this is inequitable, many nations make bilateral Double taxation agreements with each other. In some cases, this requires that tax be paid in the country of residence and be exempt in the country in which it arises. In the remaining cases, the country where the gain arises deducts taxation at source ("withholding tax") and the taxpayer receives a compensating foreign tax credit in the country of residence to reflect the fact that tax has already been paid. To do this, the taxpayer must declare himself (in the foreign country) to be non-resident there. So the second aspect of the agreement is that the two taxation authorities exchange information about such declarations, and so may investigate any anomalies that might indicate tax evasion.

Contact us to obtain information on a particular jurisdiction's double taxation agreements with other countries.