UK – Foreign Entertainers’ Taxation – The Rules Changed in July 2012

Until July 2012 there was a liability for any UK venue paying a foreign national more than £1000 to withhold tax at the approipriate current rate. As of July 2012 that changed and venues do not need to withhold tax if they are paying less than £8105 in one fee to one individual or band. (Note: a band, in this instance, only has the same limit as an individual regardless of how many members. It is a single entity.)

The Annual limit which can be earned by any one person or group (paid as a group) in any one tax year (April to March) is now £8105 as of July 2012. This applies to nationals of many countries, but you need to check the status of your own country. Canadians and South Africans do have this tax allowance, for example, but Americans do NOT and therefore still have no personal allowance limit. They pay British tax from the get-go on all profits from a tour.

If you earn more than £8105 (profit after expenses) in any one tax year you should ask the Foreign Entertainers’ Unit for the relevant paperwork so you can submit a return. Don’t worry, you can write off expenses against it and also claim it against tax to be paid in your own country when you come to do your own tax returns. You should not have to pay tax twice on the same amount of income, though the responsibility for checking this rests with you.

For more information contact: Foreign Entertainers Unit, Inland Revenue,
St John’s House Unit 401, Merton Road, Bootle, L69 9BB
+ 44 151 472 6488

About Jacey Bedford

Jacey Bedford maintains this blog. She is a writer of science fiction and fantasy (, the secretary of Milford SF Writers (, a singer ( and a music agent booking UK tours and concerts for folk performers (
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