Individual income tax rates in Tunisia are progressive to 35%. Foreign nationals working in certain sectors (e.g. export enterprises, offshore banks and hydrocarbon exploitation) can opt to pay a lump sum tax of 20% of gross salary.
With respect to the international taxation agreements, Tunisian personal income tax is a direct tax levied on income of an individual. Taxpayers are classified into resident and non-resident.
According to Tunisian laws, three criteria are used to indicate that an individual has a habitual residence in Tunisia:
•main residence of the person is in Tunisia;
•principal place of residence (period equal to or more than 183 days during a civil year);
•the individual is a civil servant or state employee carrying out his/her duty a foreign country where they are not subject to personal income tax on global income.
A non-resident is subject to tax only on personal income from Tunisian sources.
Income chargeable to the Personal Income Tax is called assessable income.
Assessable income is divided into seven categories:
1. income from commerce and industry;
2. income from non-trading professions;
3. income from agriculture and fishing activities;
4. wages, salaries, pensions and life annuities;
5. land income;
6. income in the nature of dividends and interests resulting from the detention of securities and bonds;
7. income from any other activity not specified earlier.
For each category of income, certain deductions and allowances are allowed in the calculation of the taxable income. Taxpayer shall keep the books in compliance with the accounting legislation, in order to benefit from these deductions.
In general, a person liable to taxation has to compute his tax liability, file tax return and pay tax, if any, accordingly on a calendar year basis.
Married couples file tax returns as separate individuals. Income of children is reported on the tax return of the head of family. A spouse can report income of the children on his/her tax return in certain circumstances.
Tax return due date is 5 December, subsequent to the year of taxation.
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