Claiming Back Income Tax when you Leave UK Permanently

Claiming Back Income Tax when you Leave UK Permanently

In 2008 more then 395,000 people left the UK. Of these, 60% were migrants returning home permanently, while the remaining 40% were expats starting a new life abroad. Here our tax experts answer some frequently asked questions relating to claiming back tax when you leave the UK permanently:

Can I claim back income tax when I leave the UK?
Yes. Everyone that works in the UK is given a tax free allowance. In the tax year 2009/2010 this was £6,475, which is divided between your wages each week or month. If you leave the UK part way through the year, you will not have received your full tax free allowance and as a result should be due a tax refund.

How can I calculate my tax refund?
On your last day of work or shortly after, you should be given a P45 from your employer. On your P45 there will be the amounts you earned and paid in tax during the year. Input these figures into our tax rebate calculator and it will tell you if you are due a tax refund and how much it will be.

When can I claim my tax back?
Once you have stopped working and received your P45, you can then claim your tax refund.

I left the UK permanently 4 years ago, can I still claim?
Yes. You can still make a claim for up to 6 years. After 6 years you lose your eligibility to claim.

I have lost my P45/P60; can I still make a claim?
Yes. If you have lost your P45 or P60 you can still make a claim. You will need to contact your previous employer or employers and ask the payroll department for a ‘statement of earnings’. A statement of earnings is document which can be used as a replacement for a P45 or P60.

How do I claim my tax refund?
You can either make a claim yourself or you can use a tax refund agent such as TaxFix to help you make your claim.


  1. Ari says:

    I worked for five years in uk and i am leavin uk permanently. Can i claim tax refund on p45 form and how much time it takes and whether it can tranfer to my account in my country (india). Kindly advice me

  2. paulo gomes says:

    after living and working in uk 8 years if return to portugal what can i claim

  3. victor says:

    hello im work in uk from 2005 im about 6 years and 10 mounths , i f wanth my tax credit rebat do you have any idea ou much i have refund ? said on top after 6 years i lost everting, i have 6 years and 10 mounths now!
    thanks so much

  4. Emma says:

    I left the UK and claimed my tax back (I have not yet received). How long before I can go back to the UK to work again?

  5. kate says:

    can you email p85 form to the government office?

  6. chirag says:

    i start my work in u k from august 2009 and stop work in january 2011. now i leave u k parmanent from january 2011 so how much months tax i can get back

  7. Elis says:

    I heard that If I leave UK for more than 5 years I can climb all my tax back. How can I do that???

  8. jj says:

    once you fill your p85 form, what happens next? i received a letter saying i owe some money as not enough taxes where paid in.
    when u fill up a p85 form you are not entitle to work within uk for 5 years,, right? what happens if you do anyway?

  9. Csikorita says:

    I am working in uk about 3 and half year and now I am planing to move home this year.I would like to ask if I move back can I claim back all these years tax or just this year (2012) tax?
    I’ve been in HR Revenue office but they didn’t give me a clear answer.I’ve asked already my friends whose saying I can claim back tax refund back to 5 years just afterwards up to 5 years I can’t come back to work if I want. Could you help me what I can do and how?

  10. Bernadette doherty says:

    I left UK in 1991 having been born in the UK and having worked there for 16 years. Am I entitled to a tax refund.

  11. margaret sk says:

    I have worked in the uk for the last 12years. Due to my poor health, i intend to retire at 55. I will be entitled to pension of about £300 a month plus a bit of lumpsome which will not be much.I want to go back home because I will not be able to servive on that amount. I may change my mind in the future and return to uk as iam British by Naturisation.
    Can i still claim tax refund when I leave?

  12. Avnish says:

    If I am working here for last 7 years and have decided to go back permanently , can I claim tax for the last 7 years.
    What are the implication of claiming your tax permanently

  13. Stuart says:

    Hi, I left the UK (I am a UK citizen born and bred) and moved to NZ, I am now in Malaysia working but wish to claim for my tax upto the 6yrs that I left. I left in Aug 2002.
    Can I do this?

  14. ten says:

    can i claim national insurance when i want to leave uk permanatly

  15. cc says:

    I left the UK just on 6 years ago and have only recently found out I could have claimed my tax back. Due to it being just under a month over the 6 years can I apply

  16. carolyn says:

    I left UK after working there for a year, and I got a tax refund at the end of 2008. HM have just sent me a letter saying I now owe the same amount of what I was refunded back in 2008. I haven’t worked there since so I don’t understand how this could have happened. What is going on?

  17. Claudio says:

    Hello, I moved one year ago from UK and I am italian.
    I had the entire tax free allowance but I paid 1037 pounds at the end. Might I give back also this amount that is out of the free allowance???

  18. Nora MASTOUR says:


    I left UK on the 30th of March 2012.But I am still working for uk company as a posted worker. I am based in France and I will pay my taxs there.
    Can I claim the tax refund for the 3 years I worked in UK?


  19. N.Pitt says:

    If you had different employers(4) over a few years ,do you claim your leaving the uk permanently tax individualy or claim it altogether?

  20. laetitia gilson says:

    i would like to have an information…I claimed 7 years ago my tax back and be living in spain since then but i am thinking to come back to live and work in london. Do i have to apply for a new national insurance number o can i use again the same number as i had before?

    Thanks to reply.

  21. mr prince says:

    Can i claim for my wife as a dependant relative,i have lived in France for the past four years and have paid tax on my forces pension.

  22. Elisa says:

    I worked for few years in uk and then returned home permanently.
    I had a very hard time to stop the council tax because they wanted me to keep paying even after i left uk. They even had to give me a refund, but and I never got it back.
    I suppose because I am not British then i cannot get any refunds at all. I gave up with the refund!

    Now is the HM revenue that wants me to keep paying income tax on my income in my country. This would mean I would have to pay income tax both in my country and to the uk HM revenue as well.

    Do I really have to keep paying income tax once I left England for good?
    I am not British at all and i have no connection with uk. I only studied and gained work experience there.

  23. Dileep says:

    Hi, so far i worked for 3 employers and i’m gonna resign my job next month. Do i need to provide p45 from 3 employers??? Please help

  24. Ritu says:


    I have been working since May 2010 in UK & my contract will end on 30 April 2012. Can I get my NI contribution back. I am planning to leave UK in first week of May’12.


  25. Alberto says:

    Hello, I worked full-time in the UK from September 2007 until the end of April 2011. Can I still claim my taxes? What can I claim? and What do I need to do?

  26. alla says:

    hello I moved out abroud one week ago, I dont stop my self empoyed…How can I do it by phone? I was not working before,I was growing my baby.

  27. Silvia says:

    What if u didn’t contact HM Revenue about leaving country? Could i put myself into the trouble?

  28. kavitha gopalakrishnan says:


    I am leaving the UK for good in April 2012 and will be returning to my home country permanently. I have been in full time employment from December 2010 until date . Could I please ask if I will be eligible to claim my taxes paid up until now?

    I look forward to your reply.



  29. Adelfilla says:

    Hello, I left England at the end of may 2011 after 2years working there.
    I asked my taxes back because I thought I’d never go back to UK.I got the cheque a few months later but never cashed it.
    I’ll be working again in England at the beginning of april.
    Is there any problem with that?
    Many thanks

  30. Pierpaolo says:

    I am leaving the UK the 29/03/2012, I have been working in this country since 2006. I fill in the P85, how many tax years I can claim back?

  31. Dainora Mikutaityte says:

    Hello. Before 3 weeks I sent my P85, when I could expect my money back?

  32. Agim Rexha says:

    I work as bus driver full time since 2003.I count leaving UK permanently in beginning of April, can i claim my income tax from 2003.Thanks

  33. ACJ says:

    I left the UK to work in Azerbaijan in mid-August 2010.I was employed (PAYE)for 10 months previous to this date (having spent 8.5 years working in Azerbaijan before that.
    When I left The UK in August 2010 I forgot to fill in a P85 tax form and I don’t have my P45 in my possession.I only spend around 2 weeks a year in the UK, so am not liable for income tax (tax paid in Azerbaijan).Can I still submit a P85 form backdated to Aug 2010 (without a P45) and would I be liable for a tax payment as I was only in UK for 5 months of the taw yeat 2010/2011?

    Thanks in advance

  34. J says:


    I’m on a dependant visa (and not working) that will expire in Aug this year. I will be making frequent travels to non-EU countries. Will I be able to claim VAT refund for all the purchases made in EU countries? I was told to consolidate all the VAT receipts before flying out of EU countries.

    For advice pse.

    Thank you.

  35. Edwin says:


    I am working in the UK now and I will leave by november 2012, can I recalim my NI and tax whatever I have paid (dont know if I paid in excess) but would like to reclaim telling them I am not coming back, looks like everythin gets added up to 30% of my mnthly salary and then using a P45 would like to get the rebate also

  36. CK says:

    I will be leaving my current employment and UK permanently at the end of tax year (April 2012). I am on PAYE, am i eligible for any TAX / NI refund?

  37. Ivan says:

    Hi im working in the uk since november 2002 for the same employer. If I leave the UK permanently will I get all my taxes back for the whole period of this employement?

  38. angel says:

    hi i was last year came to london and leave there naw iam back to hollond if xi came back to hollond have ia the same right as before i had ?

  39. Veronica says:

    I intend to move permanently from the UK to the republic of Ireland later this year. I have worked and lived here for 40 years. Am I entitled to claim a tax rebate? thank you

  40. guncca says:

    hi! i want claim back my income tax, i got p45 as well, but i worked in uk 2years, can i get back tax for last year, for that i need p60? and how long after claiming back tax, i can’t come back in UK?

  41. Dash says:

    I will be leaving UK soon, But my employer will be same as I will transfered to their other branch, outside UK. HOw can I claim taxrefund? Do I still need to get p45?

  42. John says:

    I am leaving the UK permanently after retiring from a 3-year full time employment. Can I claim back my NI & Pension contributions please?

  43. kate says:

    I got refund of my tax and left uk. I would like to come back what can happened then If I go back to work?

  44. Danni says:

    Hi , I’m not intending to move this year ,but eventually if i move back home ,i can claim my last years overpaid tax ? and i have got some money back from last tax year because i did overpay they sent me P800 so does it mean if i will move i will not get anything back ? Thanks

  45. Frederick says:

    What is the difference between TAX and NI deductions in my payslip?

    I am leaving Uk to return to Africa for good. Which of the two (TAX and NI)will I be refunded and at what percentage?or will the whole NI be given back to me?

  46. alex says:

    i have been working for one year and a half, I am planning to go back to my country, just i want to know that if true that i can claim all the tax I have paid and i can come back in the next 5 years.

  47. Sam fieldsend says:

    I worked at a plastic factory in 2007-2009 I was 17 when i started and it was first job. I paid tax from then onwards. But yet I should of not paid any tax till I earnt 5000 pounds or more. It’s now 2012 and I’ve recently had the tax office contact me to get information for this exact year because they have a feeling I’ve paid too much but the dates they asked for I didn’t work there but they wante to get a copy of my p60. My main worry is 4 years have passed will they still have a copie because I’ve lost all paperwork from when I worked there help!!!!

  48. arsalan says:

    hi i m International student here in Uk .. since april 2011 but for soem reasons i want to change my Colllege so for new college i have to apply new visa but i what i heard i will not get any permission of right to work on my new visa.. but on my this visa i have permision to work so on my new visa if i wont have permision to work can i still use my N.I number to work where m working right now.. as my 20 Hours / week r tax frree.

  49. Suleman says:

    Hi ,
    I am a Srilankan residence , I have been living in UK for last 8 Years as a permanent resident , Now I am planning to relocate to USA for my career and leaving UK permanently , I have attained British Passport as well , Can you please guide me if I can get any tax refund or If I could get any money back. I have worked for the same company since 2004 & my average salary would have been around £ 32 K /annum .

    Any help regarding this issue would be highly appreciated.
    Many Thnks

  50. jen says:

    im working here for the last 3 years now im leaving the UK permanently can i claim all my tax deducted to my wages for the last 3 years even i earn more than my personal allowance a year.?
    One of my friend told me if im leaving the uk permanently i can able to claim or refund all my tax for the last 3 years working here im not sure if its true or what,,i hope you can help me.thnx a lot

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