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If a foreign trust has one or more trustees who are New Zealand tax residents, we refer to the:

  • trust as a New Zealand foreign trust (NZFT)
  • trustees who are New Zealand tax residents as resident foreign trustees.

If there are multiple resident foreign trustees, we refer to the one who communicates with us on behalf of the NZFT as the 'contact trustee'.

For the NZFT to receive a tax exemption for foreign-sourced income, the contact trustee must:

  • register the NZFT with us
  • comply with ongoing disclosure and annual return processes. 

The information in this section is a general summary of the tax obligations for NZFTs. You can find more information in the 'Special report on foreign trust disclosure rules' on our policy website.

Special report on foreign trust disclosure rules (Tax Policy)

Registration requirements

Foreign trusts with a resident foreign trustee must apply for registration within 30 days of either the trust's:

  • establishment date, if starting with a resident foreign trustee
  • appointment of a resident foreign trustee.

NZFTs with non-professional resident foreign trustees may have more time to register if all trustees are:

Last updated: 28 Apr 2021
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