Tax if you return to the UK

If you come back to the UK after living abroad, you’ll usually be classed a UK resident again. This means you pay UK tax on:

You stayed UK resident if you were abroad less than a full tax year (6 April to 5 April the following year). This means you usually pay UK tax on foreign income for the entire time you were away.

What to do when you’re back

You may need to register for Self Assessment, for example if you start working for yourself or have other income or gains from the UK or abroad.

You don’t need to register if you’re an employee and don’t have other untaxed income to report.

If you return to the UK within 5 years

You may have to pay tax on certain income or gains made while you were non-resident. This doesn’t include wages or other employment income.

These rules (called ‘temporary non-residence’) apply if both:

  • you return to the UK within 5 years of moving abroad (or 5 full tax years if you left the UK before 6 April 2013)
  • you were a UK resident in at least 4 of the 7 tax years before you moved abroad

Chapter 6 of HMRC’s guidance note to the Statutory Residence Test has more information about:

  • temporary non-residence
  • what income and gains you’ll need to pay tax on

National Insurance

You’ll usually start paying National Insurance again if you work in the UK.

If you didn’t pay it while you were abroad, you can check your National Insurance record to see how your State Pension might be affected.

Find your National Insurance number if you’ve lost it.

You don’t always need to pay National Insurance if you’re not coming to the UK permanently.

Contact the International Pension Centre if you want to move a pension to the UK.