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Home to stunning fjords and phenomenal northern lights, Norway is a beautiful place to call home. With plenty to do and explore outdoors, it’s no surprise that many US expats work in this scenic country. Norway is home to over 5.5 million people and is a popular place for digital nomads around the globe to work. And if you’re one of them, it’s essential to understand how Norway taxes for US expats work.
Taxes can already be overwhelming, but things can get more complicated when you’re on the hook for both Norway and US income taxes.
With warm, temperate weather from spring to fall and a prime position along the Atlantic Ocean, it’s no wonder many US expats settle in Norway. Known for its inventive seafood dishes and stunning 16th to 19th-century architecture, Norway is home to over 10 million people and has become a more popular destination for Americans and global travelers. And Norway’s taxes for US expats are essential to understand when living in this vibrant country.
Figuring out how much you owe in taxes can be complicated — not only do you have to pay Norway taxes, but you also have to pay US taxes.
When working and living abroad in Norway, you must file both your US and Norway taxes. The excellent news is Norway has a reasonably similar tax system to the United States., And since the US has a tax treaty with Norway, you won’t pay double taxes on your income.
Residents in Norway have to pay income tax on all of their income domestically and worldwide. Non-residents, on the other hand, only pay income tax on certain incomes earned in Norway. Foreign income earned by non-residents is not subject to income tax in Norway.
Since you’re taxed differently depending on whether you’re a resident or non-resident in Norway, it’s crucial to understand how to determine your residency status.
You’re considered a resident of Norway if:
If either of the above applies to you, you’re likely considered a Norwegian resident, meaning all your wages are subject to income tax.
If you have not lived in Norway for more than 183 days in a calendar year or more than 270 days in a 36-month time frame, you’re likely considered a non-resident in Norway. Only your Norwegian-earned wages are subject to income tax.
If you’re a temporary foreign worker in Norway or new to Norway, you may qualify for PAYE (Pay As You Earn), which taxes you after your salary has been paid. In this instance, you do not need to file a tax return. You can opt out of the PAYE scheme if you plan to live in Norway — you’re only eligible if you’re a temporary worker or during your first year in the country.
General income, which includes employer wages, business income, and capital, is taxed at a flat rate of 22% in Norway. A progressive tax comes into play if you earn more than $190,350 (roughly equivalent to $18k – $19k USD).
Here’s how the progressive income tax rate works in Norway:
On top of the flat 22% general income tax rate, the income bracket tax rates are:
In addition to the standard general and personal income tax rates, self-employed individuals must pay 11.2% in self-employment tax towards Social Security contributions.
Companies in Norway pay a flat 22% tax rate on all taxable corporate profits.
This type of tax is paid by consumers when buying goods or services in Norway. VAT is then passed on from merchants to the Norwegian Tax Administration. It’s similar to sales tax in the US.
Most items and services are subject to a flat rate VAT of 25%. Some items and services qualify for lower VAT rates, including:
Norway residents and non-residents pay municipal and state wealth taxes. The municipal rate is 0.7%, and the state wealth tax rate is 0.25% for assets over NOK 1.7 million (NOK 3.4 million for married filers). The state rate increases to 0.40% for assets exceeding NOK 20 million (NOK 40 million for married filers).
There is no inheritance tax in Norway.
In Norway, property tax ranges between 1% and 4% and is determined by the municipality where the property is located.
Employees in Norway contribute 8% of their gross monthly salary towards Social Security. Employers contribute 14.1% of each employee’s salary.
Yes, Norway and the United States do have a tax treaty with the United States. This treaty helps protect US expats from double taxation on their income.
Yes, the US-Norway totalization agreement helps protect a US expat’s Social Security obligations. It functions similarly to the tax treaty, preventing expats from paying duplicate Social Security contributions to both countries.
Americans living abroad in Norway need to file income tax returns in both countries. One exception: temporary and new expats under the PAYE scheme do not need to file a tax return.
The Norwegian tax year is the same as the US: January 1 – December 31. Expats and residents of Norway will receive their tax return in March or April and must confirm the correct information, then submit the final return by April 30. You can submit your tax return online at the Norwegian Tax Administration’s website.
US expats in Norway may have more complex tax returns, but we hope this guide helped you understand your tax liability. But if you still have questions or want guidance when filing your Norway tax return for the first time, we can help.
Whether you need tax advice to prepare for a move abroad, to buy property or even retire, Greenback can help. Consults upfront can help avoid costly mistakes and stress later.