The Inland Revenue today published a revised edition of booklet IR20, ‘Residents and non-residents – liability to tax in the United Kingdom’. It reflects changes in legislation since the last full update in 1996.

The booklet sets out the rules for determining the residence status of individuals for tax purposes, and how that affects the UK treatment of their earned and investment income and capital gains. It also covers the entitlement of residents and non-residents to UK tax allowances, and double taxation relief. The new edition includes for the first time a chapter on the rules for the payment of National Insurance contributions by individuals going abroad or coming to the UK.

The new IR20 is a further example of the Inland Revenue’s continuing commitment to customer service.


1. The rules for deciding an individual’s residence status for UK tax purposes can be complex. As there is only limited guidance in the Taxes Acts, these rules are largely based on decisions of the courts, and include various Inland Revenue practices and extra-statutory concessions.

2. The booklet IR20 provides as detailed a statement of the law as is reasonably possible. But the guidance is necessarily in fairly general terms, because how the rules apply will always depend on the precise individual circumstances.

3. The previous edition of the booklet which the new version replaces was dated April 1999.

4. Copies of the new booklet may be obtained from any Inland Revenue Enquiry Centre or Tax Office, or from the Inland Revenue Visitors Information Centre, Ground Floor, South West Wing, Bush House, Strand, London WC2B 4RD.

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