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Countries have tax treaties with each other which allows citizens of A working in B to have favourable tax treatment (no tax/reduced tax/taxed like a citizen of B). I've found good documentation for tax treaties the US has with other countries, but not for any country A with B. Is there a place where I can find this information? Barring such a general database, is there information for tax treaties India has with other countries (primarily west European)?

  • Have you looked for such information from Indian Tax authority? – Karlson Mar 22 '14 at 0:28
  • I have, but I couldn't find one. Part of the difficulty lies in the fact that there are bazillions of Indians in the US, so every grad school has a document with details on the India-US treaty which pollutes the results... – user562 Mar 22 '14 at 0:49
  • Why would a website of Income Tax Department have any information from Grad Students in the US? – Karlson Mar 22 '14 at 4:12
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The best place to start searching for the Tax Treaties is the relevant tax authority in the country you are filing the tax returns for.

For example in the US the documentation can be found in publications from the IRS and for India is from the Income Tax Department, which when searching for "tax treaty" on their site will yield 2 results, which I think refers to the same document in 2 different formats.

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There doesn't actually have to be a treaty between any country A and any country B. Most countries, in fact, do not have treaties with most other countries.

You can most likely find the list of countries a country has a treaty with on that country's tax authority web site. Accidentally, that is exactly the place where you went looking for the treaties the US has with other countries.

  • I would like the jerk who downvoted to identify himself. People like this must be shamed in public and driven out of here for this forum to succeed. – littleadv Mar 22 '14 at 6:15
  • While commenting on the downvotes is helpful there is no requirement to do it. So calling someone a jerk is more detrimental to the forum then an anonymous downvote. – Karlson Mar 22 '14 at 17:19
  • @Karlson I consider such people jerks. You don't like that - that's your problem. I do not participate in forums where jerks are welcome and encouraged. If I remember correctly, this is not the first time where I chose not to participate in a forum you're active in. – littleadv Mar 22 '14 at 19:48
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    You're taking this way too personally... – Karlson Mar 22 '14 at 20:00
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Treaties (of all kinds) are always “held” (not sure about the proper English terminology) by one of the signatories so there is no central authority listing them all and no exhaustive global database. You might find a database of all treaties a state has ratified on the website of the relevant Ministry for Foreign Affairs and advice on your tax status on the website of the relevant tax authority but the quality of these websites varies widely.

Also, treaties are useful to deal with complex cases (property in multiple countries, international inheritance, etc.) and to avoid double-taxation in countries taxing citizens wherever they live (like the US) but in many cases foreign residents are simply taxed like locals by default. Some countries have also established favorable rules (the 30% rule in the Netherlands, imposition au forfait/Pauschalbesteuerung in Switzerland, etc.) unilaterally.

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