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anonymous
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Q: freelance work in China

 

I will receive a job offer for China , I am a German fashion designer. My employer with office in Hangzhou / China wants me to issue a bill every month ,so it will be a freelance work in China, but he will take care for my work visa , it will be a fulltime job.

Must I found a consulting company in order to be able to issue an invoice for my work in China?

Would it be possible to found acompany in HongKong / allthough not living there and issue the invoice over a HongKong company?

What kind of tax costs will apply / will those taxes be more than for a nregular employment contract?

 

I appreciate all answers from anybody with experience or knowledge in this matter, thanks a lot

6 years 32 weeks ago in  Business & Jobs - Hangzhou

 
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Emperor

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This sounds very fishy.  The reason is that if this company is going to get you a work visa, they are sponsoring you as an employee.  There should be no reason for you to invoice them, as they are your employer, not client.  At least in the terms of a visa.

 

However, I could be wrong about this.  And I am sure that if I am, others here will let us know.  :)

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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For answers to all your questions as well as good general advice to help you plan your time in China so it is both legal and positive for you I suggest you email firstinchina@chinamail.com setting out all your questions. They are a long established company run by a English gentlemen and two bi-lingual Chinese. Experts in local immigration and company law, as well as many other related areas. Obviously they do charge for any service they provide, but the cost is very reasonable and good information and advice is well worth paying for. Their charges are less than a local lawyer, the service general better, completely confidential, reliable, and very up to date. The last point is very important because of the changes the new immigration law has brought about.

Hoping this is helpful.

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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No, Expat john is not wrong. If that company issues you with an invitation letter to get a 'z' visa, you are committing yourself to that company as an employee. They (the company) have the legal responsibility to remunerate you and report your earnings to the local government. They must also register you for statutory national insurance. You will be issued with either a work permit or foreign experts' certificate that will have that company stated on it as your employer. You are not legally permitted to seek any employment outside that company. Therefore you are not technically working freelance.

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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If you must work as a self employed consultant in this project, you will not be legally entitled to a 'Z' visa from that company but there are a couple of workarounds. Firstly, you can register a company in your own country and enter as an overseas specialist or consultant. You draft a contract with the Hangzhou company detailing the service offered and the method of remuneration. The HZ company should pay the invoiced amount into a bank account registered under your company name. The HZ company cannot pay the money into your personal account as this will show when the company undergoes annual inspection by the government here in China. The HZ company can issue you with an invitation letter for a multi-entry 'F' visa for the duration of the contract. As immigration tightens in China, when you apply for the 'F' visa, you may also have to present a copy of the contract and proof that you are legally self employed in your own country. Using this method, you would be liable for tax and NI in your own country. The second option is to open your own office in the Mainland or HK. Various agents can help you with this process and take you through the pros and cons of each. Generally speaking, HK is cheapest, easiest and most flexible but is harder when it comes to obtaining work permits and residence permits. China Mainland is more expensive and fraught with bureaucracy but gives you more flexibility in terms of residence. There is a tax threshold of just over 4000 rmb per month for overseas nationals then 5% PAYE. However, there is something like 40% employer NIC and various other corporation taxes to pay. You will also need to subcontract a Chinese accountant and pay various government fees.

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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Sorry, double post!

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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Now why do I think the question and answer were by the same person?

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6 years 32 weeks ago
 
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