Relocation from the UK to NL

Hello - first time poster here.

My wife (Dutch) and I (British) are directors and 50% shareholders of a profitable UK limited company (legal sector). We have significant cash reserves in the UK limited company and have partially paid off a mortgage on a UK property.

We are thinking about permanently relocating to the Netherlands. The administrative steps to achieve the relocation - what to do and in what order are a little daunting.

The primary goals are: 1) keep business running but operate via Dutch BV entity rather than UK limited company 2) get right to work in NL with permanent relocation in mind and mindful of Brexit; 3) get cash out of our business for use to buy Dutch property.

I have a very rough plan, but I might be mistaken and am very open-minded about changing it.

The plan is as follows:

- open up Dutch BV company now (and before the end of January Brexit date) [both as directors or just wife as director for now?];
-  sell UK property;
- close UK business and claim tax relief associated with the same (members voluntary liquidation) - this allows us to take all the cash out the business at a tax rate of just 10%;
- relocate to the NL and claim the 30% tax rule [will this still apply after Brexit and can my wife/I apply or just me as expat? My wife has a Dutch passport and is an expat here (we have lived several years in the UK)];
- buy Dutch house with cash and small mortgage

Any thoughts or comments? Any deadlines? For example, is it important to open Dutch BV now and before the end of January Brexit date or does it not matter? What about the 30% rule in our situation? Is there anything else I should consider? Perhaps there is another strategy that we can adopt to achieve the overall goals, e.g. keep UK limited company open, etc. Somehow the 'clean break' - close UK limited company and operate form Dutch BV entity - seems desirable.

Hi and welcome to the Forum.

Where and how you pay taxes depends on where you are deemed as being resident; the moment you move to the Netherlands, you will be deemed as a resident there.

There is a double taxation agreement in place between the UK/NL, so any income assessed for taxes in the UK should be safe for assessment in NL.  The issue is that the agreement applies only to income taxes and the Dutch have additional taxes (social taxes - circa 27%) that are outside the scope of the agreement, so any income you have earned in the current Dutch tax year will be assessed in the Netherlands for social taxes.

As for 30%, it's not an EU benefit, so Brexit should have no effect on it.  However, there is no deal yet and who knows how badly the UK will fall out at the end of 2020 and although I think it unlikely, nobody knows - these types of things are decided not by common sense, but by the stroke of a politicians pen.  If it's vital to the success of your venture, then you need to speak to a finance professional and make decisions based on facts, not internet Forum speculation.

Other comments:

Open a Dutch company - speak to the Kamer van Koophandel (link); they used to have an English version of the website, but it seems to no longer be the case, but you can get your wife to help you there.

Buy Dutch house with cash etc - it's unusual to do this in the Netherlands; when we asked we were advised to always buy a house with somebody else's money wherever possible.  If your company is a new venture, you may wish to have the cash available for elsewhere - anyway, when you open your NL bank account - ask them before you commit; things like credit rating may be an issue, even to get a mobile phone contract.

Hope this helps.

Expat Team

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