The Seoul Metropolitan Government (SMG) is publishing overdue tax return information for international residents in 14 languages, including English, Chinese, Vietnamese and Mongolian, to collect overdue taxes and enhance tax return management. Posted on 43 websites, blogs, Facebook pages of foreigner and multicultural family centers, it is intended to encourage payment of overdue tax returns of international residents.
According to the SMG, there are about 220,000 registered international residents of Seoul as of November 2021. Among them, 106,000 have overdue taxes to the city and 25 autonomous districts. In total, there are 170,000 cases of overdue tax returns amounting to a staggering KRW 17.3 billion.
The SMG created promotional leaflets for the payment of overdue tax returns in 14 languages: English, Chinese, Japanese, Mongolian, Vietnamese, Arabic, Spanish, Russian, Uzbek, Thai, Filipino, Indonesian, French, and Urdu.
The SMG decided to post tax return information on the websites of foreigner and multicultural family centers to raise awareness and prevent any penalty imposed on international residents due to the languages barrier of understanding and figuring out how to file their tax returns or pay their overdue taxes. Going forward, the SMG will create various promotional materials such as leaflets to place them at 43 foreigner centers, immigration offices, public service centers in autonomous districts, etc.
Meanwhile, the SMG will take active action against tax evasion by international residents with restrictions on visa extensions by utilizing a pre-visa extension local tax overdue verification system, and enforcing bans on leaving the country as well as confiscating dormant insurance premiums and exclusive insurances, thereby applying stringent overdue tax collection activities for international residents on the same level to the citizens.
The SMG has revealed that there are no regulations regarding the tax data and tax evader control for international residents in Korea in relevant local tax laws. In addition, there are various issues such as the difficulties to checking international resident information, the possibility to leave the country with unpaid taxes, and difficulties to tracking international residents when they are found to not reside in the registered residence, etc. Taking these issues into consideration, the SMG is committed to formulating an effective overdue tax collection system for international residents.