There are a number of reasons why you may be able to claim a UK tax rebate. You may have had too much tax taken from your pay. You may have stopped work part way through a tax year. Or, you may have paid too much tax having completed a tax return.
A common reason for claiming a tax rebate is if you have worked in the UK for part of a tax year, and then you spend the rest of the year living and working in another country.
Our guide looks at claiming a tax rebate if you live abroad, and whether it affects your eligibility to come back to the UK.
If you leave the UK you may be able to claim a tax rebate
If you have worked for part of the tax year in the UK and then you leave then you may be able to claim a tax refund.
Your income is likely to have been taxed assuming that you were going to be working in the UK for the whole tax year. Your tax code is likely to have been such that your tax-free allowances were spread over a 12 month period. So, if you work part of the year in the UK and then head overseas, you may be eligible to get some of the tax you have paid in the UK back.
Claiming a tax rebate does not automatically affect your eligibility to return to the UK
It is important to note that claiming a tax rebate does not affect your eligibility to return to the UK. Just because you have claimed some tax back does not mean that you are prevented from returning to live and work in the UK – either in the same tax year or in a different tax year.
You should always check your visa and rights of residence in the UK. These are separate to your tax affairs and determine whether you are allowed to legally live and work in the UK.
Returning to the UK in the same tax year
If you were to return to the UK in the same tax year that you left (even if you had claimed a tax rebate) you would once again start to pay tax on any earnings. You would be given a tax code and tax would be deducted.
Even if you have claimed a tax rebate for that tax year, your eligibility to return would not be affected. Any underpayment or overpayment could be calculated at the end of the tax year and you will either receive a tax bill or a tax rebate, depending on whether you have paid too much or too little tax.