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Anyone have an experence with the Aussie TAX system for working Offshore?

What really happens in Australia for TAX.

Can they take earnings like they do in Norway?

Or is it just if you work for an Aussie company employed in Aus you will lose out to the Tax man.

Been offfered work for an Aussie registered company through there
overseas office through an Agent to go to Offshore Woodside.

I fully understand the TAX system for onshore Australia with Tax file Number etc

But hav no idea about going in on different types of permits for Offshore
Hi Deepseacon,

It's not clear where you're being paid, you mention an overseas branch and an agency?

If you're a Ozzie non-resident and being paid through the Ozzie office, tax will be deducted at source and that can be used as a tax credit for your local tax office. You can claim your super back as well for being non-resident.

However, if you're an Ozzie and you live overseas you can't claim it back. A different tax rate applies for non-residents on the lower tax bands, but it's the same on the upper tax bands.

All the gen you require is on the ATO's web site.

If you're being paid the UK or SE Asia rate you will have to check with them if they're deducting tax at source.

There's a little known fact about work in Oz and the agencies don't band it about and that all work in Oz by non-residents must be paid at the Ozzie rate. It's ozzie law and if they tell you differently, well all I can say is they're being economic with the truth.

Who's the agency anyway?


To save others some time how about you search through this site first. There has been a fair bit of discussion in the past few years on Oz tax. Use the Google Search ROVworld option at the top left and it'll probably pull up a few leads.

If you read one of the threads and still have a question reply to that thread and see what comes back.
James Mc
Site Admin

Shocked Search First - Ask questions later Thumb Up
Well are you a resident in Australia for tax or not??..Its so simple if yo are then you pay tax... Rolling Eyes Wink
Agency is Hays the position is not ROV Just Offshore Technician Subsea related.

The contract would be from Hays in Singapore so paid from the Office there.

There is a lot of changes in regards to the Aussie Tax system going through at this time.

I dont pay any tax at this time and i dont really intend too either.
Hi..Can I ask if you are Australian or not and are you being paid Offshore Austrlian rates?
Generally, all resident and non-residents employed in Australia’s EEZ (Exclusive Economic Zone) are technically liable for tax, whether employed locally or by an overseas agency. If paid through a local office, they will deduct the tax at source.

Subsection 6-5(3) of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 (ITAA) provides that the assessable income of a non resident taxpayer includes ordinary income derived directly or indirectly from all Australian sources during the income year. Generally, Australian courts have held that the source of employment income is where the employee performs their duties.

If paid through an overseas agency, this may not happen, but you will still be liable. If non-resident, the ATO has Taxation Agreement Acts with many countries, but if no Agreement (depending on which country you reside permanently), you MAY be entitled to work up to 183 days (Article 15(2)) within the Australian income tax year without incurring an Australian tax liability.

And as Stu said, it is Australian law to pay workers at the market rate, whether you are permanent or temp. Check up on the ROVWorld rate section for that.

Seems a full picture of your particulars circumstances raises more questions than answers, but I would highly suggest obtaining the services of a competent Tax Consultant to provide you with this. Mr. Google will help out here Wink
No i am not Australian and also i am NON UK Resident so pay no TAX in the UK.
As I said, better to get professional tax advice, as other circumstances such taxation agreements between your country of ‘residence’, the total duration of employment (within the Australian Tax Year) in the Australian EEZ etc may affect your liabilities.

But generally, it seems that all income SHOULD be taxed as income is sourced from within the EEZ. Also the tax paid may be given as a tax credit in your country of 'residence', depending on what agreements are in place.
looking at your location DSC, this may be of benefit. exact same rules apply for phillipines. this applies to wages type income only.
if any other agreements needed, yell out.


ARTICLE 15 Dependent Personal Services


Subject to the provisions of Articles 16, 18, 19 and 20, salaries, wages and other similar remuneration derived by an individual who is a resident of one of the Contracting States in respect of an employment shall be taxable only in that State unless the employment is exercised in the other Contracting State. If the employment is so exercised, such remuneration as is derived from that exercise may be taxed in that other State.


Notwithstanding the provisions of paragraph 1, remuneration derived by an individual who is a resident of one of the Contracting States in respect of an employment exercised in the other Contracting State shall be taxable only in the first mentioned State if:

(a) the recipient is present in that other State for a period or periods not exceeding in the aggregate 183 days in the tax year or year of income, as the case may be, of that other State;

(b) the remuneration is paid by, or on behalf of, an employer who is not a resident of that other State; and

(c) the remuneration is not deductible in determining taxable profits of a permanent establishment or a fixed base which the employer has in that other State.


Notwithstanding the preceding provisions of this Article, remuneration in respect of an employment exercised aboard a ship or aircraft operated in international traffic by a resident of one of the Contracting States may be taxed in that Contracting State.
Hope you dont mind me asking but if you are not an Australian resident then why are you working in Australia.Do you have a visa to work in Australia?If not the agencies shouldnt be employing you to work in Australia?.
The Company will get a 457 Visa.

In Question about Australia the companies bring in outsiders for many reasons.
Reasons like what; no available ROV personnel in Oz with experience on system type and or workscope ??????

Doubt it, and would think that the onboard MUA rep may have something to say on that subject,as they do go through the manning of all vessels etc entering and working in Aussie waters and sometimes ask the question.

Are they going to pay Aussie market rates? Make sure the Agency is aware that it is illegal for the company not to.

Last edited by redherring on 19:03 Tue 08 Jun 10; edited 1 time in total
deepseacon wrote:

In Question about Australia the companies bring in outsiders for many reasons.

These days I personally wouldn't get involved with what you are contemplating doing.

We've had a bit of a discussion about this in the past and at the time I picked up a bit on how some companies have been trying it on down there.
I also picked up a bit on how the local Oz lads feel about this practice. Not good.
One (of a few) of the reasons companies bring in so called 'outsiders' appears to be so that they can get away with paying lower rates than the agreed/going Oz rate.
In so doing they undermine employment opportunities and contract conditions for the local Oz lads! Not really on is it?
It also appears that a few companies are exploiting 457 visa out-with the spirit of it's introduction. Barely legal, if at all, and I sense probably a loophole that will be shut in future... to offshore workers at least.

I would suggest that you may come unstuck if you try to avoid tax altogether in this instance. As we all know, due to the global recession, tax authorities are becoming much less forgiving in situations such as these. The 457 'may' help you avoid tax in Oz but you would only need the Singapore or Oz tax authorities to check on the Singapore company taking you on and they would spill the beans in seconds.. the rest would all end in beers at Bernies!!

In the EU.....
There was an instance where a well known offshore Aberdeen based ROV employer was asked by the Danish tax authorities about a single person whom they had evidence of having worked in Denmark. They were looking for their slice of the pie.. It took the company all of an hour to email all of that persons personal contact details directly to the Danish tax department. No hesitation.
The person was receiving emails and phone calls within a few hours after that! It appears that if you don't play ball and they get no response they will simply email all those details and their suspicions on your work activities to any tax authority they feel should know about them.

You might also wish to consider that if any Oz people you are working with offshore get a sniff of you avoiding tax you could end up with your name being called into the Oz Tax 'Dob In' line.

I sense you may be opening a greater can of worms than you might want to deal with.

Go there, work, pay the tax and sleep easy!
James Mc
Site Admin

Shocked Search First - Ask questions later Thumb Up
As you still haven’t said what their day rate is, I checked out Mr. Google.

Seems Hays Recruitment day rate is abysmal, USD300-400 (plus mobilization & other benefits) for a 6 yr PT.

Doesn’t say the work is actually in Oz, but nevertheless, extremely low.

If the work is for Oz, the rate is around 3 times short of the going rate (inclusive of taxes and superannuation)!!

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