W8 UK | Essential Guide for Tax Compliance & How To Fill Form

W8 UK

The W8 form is affiliated with the USA and is also present in the UK. The form is actually used for non-US persons who are generating their income from the US. This form aims to certify non-US people who are not considered under US status, who earn their money, and who do not want to pay taxes as ordinary citizens of the USA. 

However, the W8 form permits individuals to provide the required details such as TIN (taxpayer identification number), name, certificate of foreign status, and address. This form requires the type of income you are earning, and you also need to claim whether you are getting tax treaty benefits.

What is the W8 UK Form?

The W8 form serves the same purpose in the UK as in the USA. The form creates an entity for tax treaties for individuals under US status. As mentioned, two tax forms are available for W8: W9 for USA individuals and W8 for non-USA individuals. 

The UK government benefits UK residents living in the USA by certifying them as non-USA individuals. Such individuals cannot pay US-based taxes and will not receive pensions, interests, royalties, dividends, or other income.  

Different types of W8 form?

Different types of W8 forms are present here, depending on the entity of each individual. These are classified as:

  • W-8BEN: a common category of the W8 form that proclaims that the application is an application for a tax treaty and is under non-US status.
  • W-8BEN-E: This form is for those non-US persons who work under partnerships or corporations. 
  • W-8IMY: This form is used for financial institutes or foreign banks. 
  • W-8ECI claims that individuals linked directly to any US trade or business will surely pay US taxes.
  • W-8EXP: It is used for central banks and international organizations. 

What is the W-8BEN-E form?

For tax collection the US-based agency IRS developed this form. US residents with green cards, people who live continuously in the US, and those who have settled businesses in the USA are eligible to pay taxes. Before paying taxes, these individuals have to check under which entity they fall.

In addition, people living in the USA but are foreign will also pay tax, but their terms and conditions may be different. Some people work with US companies but can also pay tax if they draw transactions in foreign countries. Also, this form benefits you if you are working with your client, and if your client’s earnings depend on the UK economy, you will not pay tax in the US. 

How do you fill out the W8 form?

Fill W8 correctly under the category in which you are entitled:

  • Provide personal information regarding address, name, TIN, and identity if your home country; your TIN will be your identification number.
  • Specify the tax treaty between the USA and your country to ensure which tax treaty you are under. 
  • Sign the form and other accurate information about yourself that shows you are non-USA.
  • Provide your DOB (date of birth)
  • Fill in the box if you are single, corporate, or in a partnership.
  • Some entities have different requirements for some individuals, so if you think you fall into this category, please fill this out also.
  • Exemption of FATCA reporting.

How long is your W-8BEN valid?

W-8BEN is valid for up to three years. After that, you have to go for its renewal but keep your identity, your name, or the address given on the previous form because it takes time to renew. There are some conditions in which your form can be invalid. These are:

  • If you go foreign for an extended period
  • If you renew the new form before its expiry, you will be noticed, and if you respond after this notice, your form will be valid. 
  • If your tax entity is separate from the USA and your home country.

How to complete the W-8BEN form?

It is a simple process. Follow these mentioned steps given below:

  • First, log in to the fidelity account and fill in the given details to secure the form.
  • When you submit the form, you will be notified that it is valid or invalid. If it is valid, you can check the form status on your account. 
  • You can buy US shares, do business there, and work with a valid form.

As you complete the form, you must fill out some required details about your TIN and national-issued insurance number. Provide accurate and detailed information to make your form valid for three years. 

Avoid these mistakes while filling out the W8 form.

Avoid these common mistakes that make your form delayed or, in some cases, rejected:

  • Not providing accurate information regarding yourself or some people providing fake or wrong details leads to rejection.
  • Before you get any form, check the form or work type to determine whether you are eligible for this entity. 
  • Specify the treaty category you rely on if applying for treaty benefits.
  • Fill all the sections in the form. Incomplete form filling will cause a delay.
  • Generally, the validity time of the form is three years. It is updated gradually, so you must always have an active, recent version. 

Conclusion

To summarise, the W8 form is vital for individuals earning from US sources, such as freelancers, business people, traders, etc. But belonging to foreign countries, they will get tax treaties as other US people get, so with the help of such people, this W8 came into existence. Understand the rules and terms of this form, making it beneficial for you, and when it becomes valid for you, it gives you more benefits, just like other US nationals. However, the form updates regularly after some time, so keeping yourself updated makes you eligible at the time of renewal.

(FAQs)

What happens if you do not submit a W8 form?

If you do not submit a form or your form is rejected, you can not get a tax treaty on government rates. It is compulsory for every individual to pay tax whether you submit this form or not. If you submit form you will have benefits in tax treaty otherwise you need to pay tax in high ratio and will not be able for get benefits like other US nationals.

Where can you get the W8 form?

You can get a W8 uk form on the IRS’s official website. On this website, you will get a PDF of the form with various sections. Fill this form out with accurate information and submit it. After that, you will get a notification of validation that ensures you can now get a tax treaty. 

How much does the W8 form cost?

There is no cost for W8 uk from other procedures may cost such as:

  • Notary fee
  • Professional assistance
  • Shipping cost
  • Opportunity cost

Can I submit W8 electronically?

You can submit the form electronically, depending on your entity’s specificity. If your tax entity offers electronic submission, you can. However, some institutes for this purpose allow you to come there and perform biometric verification of your form. In some cases, your physical signatures are required. These institutes are allowed to follow these sorts of procedures. 

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Our Head Solicitor
Khurram Amir Qureshi

Khurram Amir Qureshi has been an advocate of Pakistan since 2004, a Solicitor of England and Wales since 2009, Solicitor of Ireland since 2015. He has extensive experience in family law, Immigration law, Personal injury cases, and Civil and Commercial litigation gaining over 13 years of continuous practice in England and Wales.

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