Cheat Sheet: Part 1 – FAQ About Tax Season in Singapore

Investing in SME Lending vs Stocks and Bonds (and via Robo-Advisories)

Taxes can be a painful time for most – all that paperwork, returns, and actual filing. However, filing your taxes in Singapore can be quick and easy with these tips. 

How Much Do You Need To Pay?
For starters, if you’re wondering how much tax you really need to pay, check out the IRAS Personal Tax Calculator. From rental income to parenthood tax rebate, the comprehensive list will help you compute your personal income tax liability. Additionally, it also shares other information such as property tax, stamp duty, and more.

What Is Taxable, And What Is Not?
All income earned in or derived from Singapore is chargeable to income tax. In general, overseas income received in Singapore on or after 1 Jan 2004 is not taxable, except in some circumstances. Income earned may come from different sources such as:

  • Employment
  • Trade, Business, Profession or Vocation
  • Property or Investments
  • Other Sources (e.g. annuities, royalties, winnings or estate or trust income)

You can refer to the full list of income tax table here to find out more. 

Am I Eligible for Tax Relief?
If you’re looking for ways to reduce your personal income tax in Singapore, IRAS has provided a complete list here. Some of the popular ones include:

  • Deductions for Employees
  • Deductions on Rental Expenses
  • Deductions on Donations

However, you need to take note that a personal income tax relief cap of $80,000 applies to the total amount of all tax reliefs claimed for each Year of Assessment.

Singapore Income Tax Rates 2019/2020 for Residents
Singapore’s personal income tax rates for resident taxpayers are progressive. Which means higher income earners pay a proportionately higher tax. You will be treated as a Tax Resident if you are a:

  • Singaporean citizen or Singapore Permanent Resident residing in Singapore;
  • A foreigner working or living in Singapore for more than 183 days (approx. 6 months) in the previous year. (This excludes director of a company, you will be taxed differently). For a quick calculation, check out the Tax Calculator for Residents in IRAS

Singapore Income Tax Rates 2019/2020 for Non-Residents
According to IRAS, the employment income of non-residents is taxed at the flat rate of 15% or the progressive resident tax rates (whichever is the higher tax amount).

As for the taxes on Director’s fee, consultation fees and all other income, the tax rates for non-resident individuals (except certain reduced final withholding tax rates) has been raised from 20% to 22%. This is to maintain parity between the tax rates of non-resident individuals and the top marginal tax rate of resident individuals.

For a quick calculation, check out the Non-Resident Tax Calculator in IRAS. 

Written by

Cheryl Toh

Last updated on

March 12th 2020, 5:57 pm

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