When do you become a New Zealand tax resident?
You become a New Zealand tax resident when the first of these happens:
- you’ve lived in New Zealand for more than 183 days in any 12-month period
- you have a permanent place of abode in New Zealand.
How are the 183 days counted?
- Parts of days (such as the day you arrive) count towards the 183 days.
- The 183 days do not need to follow each other.
Your New Zealand tax residency status starts on the first of the 183 days.
What is a permanent place of abode?
You have a permanent place of abode if you have:
- a place where you usually live in New Zealand or
- strong ties to New Zealand.
A place where you usually live in New Zealand
This is somewhere such as a house that:
- you've previously lived in or are likely to live in
- you usually live in whenever you come back to New Zealand.
You don't need to own the place. For example, it might be your parents' house. The place doesn't need to be vacant. For example, you might own a house and rent it out while you're away.
Put simply, it's somewhere you can call 'home' in New Zealand.
Strong ties to New Zealand
To have a permanent place of abode you need to have strong ties to New Zealand.
Some of the things to consider are:
- how often you return to New Zealand
- how long you spend here
- your family and social ties
- your economic interests, for example, investments or superannuation funds in New Zealand
- your employment or business ties
- whether you intend to return to live in New Zealand.
You can read more about the permanent place of abode criteria in the New Zealand tax residence guide IR292.
Seasonal workers or fishing crew from overseas
If you come to work in New Zealand on a Recognised Seasonal Employer Limited Visa or a Fishing Crew Work Visa you do not qualify as a tax resident after 183 days.
You could qualify as a tax resident if you have a permanent place of abode here.
When do you become a non-resident taxpayer?
You become a non-resident taxpayer if you don't have a permanent place of abode in New Zealand and you’re away from New Zealand for more than 325 days in any 12-month period:
- Parts of days (such as the day you leave) count towards the 325 days.
- The 325 days do not need to follow each other.
Working overseas for the New Zealand government
You are still a New Zealand tax resident if you are sent overseas to work for the New Zealand government. It doesn't matter how long you're away for or whether you have a permanent place of abode here.
This does not apply to your spouse, partner or children who are leaving New Zealand with you. They need to work out their tax residency status based on their personal circumstances.
Need help working out your tax residency status?
Ask us or your tax agent if you're not sure what your tax residency status is.
You can read more about tax residency in the New Zealand tax residence guide IR292.
You can also fill in the New Zealand tax residence questionnaire (IR886) and send it to us. We'll let you know your tax residency status.