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Corporate Compliance Requirements in New Zealand

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Unsure about your accounting, taxation and fiscal obligations in New Zealand? Keep reading, stay informed and ensure you remain in good standing with local authorities.

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Corporate Compliance Requirements in New Zealand

  1. 1. www.bizlatinhub.com www.bizlatinhub.com Corporate Compliance Requirements for Legal Entities in New Zealand
  2. 2. Compliance Requirements in New Zealand Regardless of their commercial activity, all companies incorporated and operating in New Zealand must comply with a series of obligations involving several Government Entities. These obligations are related with the following aspects: 1. Incorporation 2. Operation 3. Taxes
  3. 3. 1. Incorporation Every foreign company entering New Zealand must comply with the following steps in order to incorporate a company in New Zealand: • Reserve and register a Company name. • Have an official registered office address in New Zealand. However, companies that prefer to no have a physical presence in New Zealand can retain the services of legal and accounting professionals in order to register their address. • A minimum of one shareholder of at least one share of a minimum value of NZ$1 is required to incorporate a company in New Zealand. • At least one director of every company incorporated in New Zealand must reside in New Zealand (or Australia), which must be informed to the New Zealand Companies Office with certain accompanying details. • Both shareholders and directors must sign a consent disclosing their date and place of birth
  4. 4. 2. Operation Once a company has been incorporated in New Zealand, it must comply with certain requirements in order to remain operative: • It must hold annual shareholder meetings within 18 months of its balance date (and no later than 6 months after this date). • If it is registered as an overseas company, its financial statements must be filed on an annual basis with de Companies Office. • Large companies (i.e., those whose two last financial statements show a revenue, along with their subsidiaries’, between NZ$30 and NZ$60) must disclose their financial statements (as well as companies with more than 10 shareholders who fail to opt-out during the fiscal year and companies with less than 10 shareholders who fail to opt-in). • Legal representatives: although not mandatory, it is advisable to appoint a legal representative. Under New Zealand laws, both external and internal legal representatives are equally allowed.
  5. 5. 3. Taxes Companies in New Zealand are subject to several tax obligations. Among these, the most important are: • Corporate income tax: 28% of the company’s income. Note that a company may file an income tax return form with the Inland Revenue Department. • Payroll tax: depending on whether the company hires local or foreign employees, the company will be required to retain a higher or lower percentage of its employees’ salary. However, non-resident companies may consider seeking support of a recruitment and hiring solutions provider. • Personal income tax: employees are required to pay a tax calculated as a percentage of their wage. Note that they may file a tax return as well. While employees with an income up to NZ$14,000 must pay a 10.5% personal income tax, employees with an income over NZ$60,000 must pay a 33% personal income tax. • Goods and services tax: Goods and Services Tax (GST) is a value-added tax or consumption tax for goods and services consumed in New Zealand. A 15% GST is applied to the final price of the product or service being purchased. While non-resident companies are usually required to register for GST, a resident company may choose whether to do it or not (depending on their turnover threshold).
  6. 6. 3. Taxes Avoid getting double-taxed: Being double taxed in New Zealand and another country as a foreign investor can be a possibility due to defaults in the system. However, this mistake is easy to avoid if you can provide evidence of credit for tax paid overseas on an income that is also subject to the New Zealand Tax. There are, however, agreements in place with 39 trading and investing partners of New Zealand to avoid double taxation incidents occurring.
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