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A certificate of residency is a document supplied by Inland Revenue. We issue it to New Zealand tax residents to prove their residency for income tax purposes to foreign tax authorities in countries or territories that:

  • have double tax agreements with New Zealand
  • require such certificates.

You might need this proof to get reductions in withholding tax rates or exemptions for income you earn in the other country or territory. However, it's important to note that some overseas tax authorities may have additional administrative requirements. Not all countries or territories require a certificate.

Individuals applying for a certificate of residency

If you're a New Zealand tax resident, you may apply for a certificate of residency by sending us the required information. See 'Apply for a certificate of residency - individuals' below.

Entities and trusts applying for a certificate of residency

If you're an entity that is a New Zealand tax resident or a trust, you may apply for a certificate of residency by sending us the required information. Note the special considerations for dual resident companies and trusts below.

Dual resident companies

If you're a dual resident company, you may need to apply to a competent authority to determine the country or territory in which you're resident for tax treaty purposes. Failure to obtain a determination can result in the loss of benefits under a DTA. See the following link for more details and where to send correspondence.

Tax residency status for companies

Trusts

You apply for a certificate of residency. However, due to the specific nature of trusts, what we issue is better described as a certificate of the taxable person's New Zealand tax liability status.

Once we receive all the required information, we will issue certificates of the taxable person's New Zealand tax liability status in the following situations.

  • You're a trustee for a trust that has been settled by a New Zealand tax resident. We will state in the certificate that, as the settlor is a New Zealand tax resident, worldwide income is taxable.
  • The foreign trust is not registered with us and its foreign-sourced income will be subject to tax in New Zealand. We can issue a certificate if the trustee gets an IRD number and files New Zealand tax returns. We will state in the certificate that foreign-sourced income is taxable in New Zealand.

We do not issue certificates of the taxable person's New Zealand tax liability status in the following situation.

  • You're a New Zealand resident trustee of a trust settled by a non-resident and do not have any income subject to New Zealand tax. This could occur where you have registered the foreign trust and all the income has a foreign source.