Second job taxes?

I do some freelance work for a company that does not hold a work permit for me. My first job brings in the dough - and the tax rate is 10% (on a salary of 50 ~ 80k a month… I do various amounts of work for them).

The freelance job pays around 20k a month gross, yet they are taxing me at 20% - the 183 day rate, and I’ve been told I will always be taxed at this rate because it is a second job. They said it has to do with some recent tax office crackdown (something I had heard in my first job as well).

However something sounds fishy. I’ve been here for two years (well over 183 days) and I’m being taxed 20% on 19k a month? Is this right?



Main question in my mind is are they going to cough up a withholding form (koujiao pindan) for you at the end of the tax year, so you can file? I’m not sure I would take them on about changing the withholding rate (regardless of whether you’re right or wrong, and I don’t know what basis they’re using to justify their actions either) but if you can get the tax form you can file taxes and you’ll get any excess back. Maybe you can think of it as some weird form of compulsory savings? That seems to be the easiest way around the whole thing from my experience.

If you’re really working freelance (never in their office) it depends on what you’re doing – I used to translate for a lot of companies and they never deducted anything, but you had to make sure they put the income under the “gao fei” category (“manuscript fees”) because you have a tax-free allowance of something like NT$180K per year on that type of income (even as a foreigner). Logically (which Taiwan is not always!) that should tell us that it’s okay to earn “gao fei” income, which by definition is not a full-time job…but that’s another question. I never had any problems filing tax returns with up to 9 “extra” attached tax forms in addition to my “visa job”.