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Tax and Social Security payments by foreign workers (FOI)

Tax and Social Security payments by foreign workers (FOI)

Produced by the Freedom of Information office
Authored by Government of Jersey and published on 08 December 2020.
Prepared internally, no external costs.


I would like to know if the foreign workers on the building sites are supporting Jersey by paying Tax and Social Security. The site by where I live is mainly French workers and I believe that they can come and go without any isolation.


Income Tax

There are many specific factors that need to be considered when determining an individual’s residency for Jersey tax purposes and from that their scope for paying tax in the Island.

These factors include, but are not limited to:

  • number of nights spent in Jersey in any one year

  • where the individual stays whilst in Jersey (and whether or not the accommodation is provided by the employer)

  • the tax residence of their employer

  • the terms of their employment contract

  • the provisions of any double tax arrangement that may be in place between Jersey and their “home” jurisdiction

Once the tax residence of the foreign worker and the employer is determined this will dictate the exposure to Jersey tax of the individual - depending on where their income arises.

Are construction worker's earnings liable to Jersey income tax?

​Resident employer 

​Non-resident employer

​Resident worker​YesYes​
​Non-resident worker ​Yes​No

Further information on residency for Jersey tax purposes can be found in the following link:

Residency for Jersey income tax

Social Security

The answer depends on whether the employer is based in Jersey and whether the employee is ordinarily resident in Jersey.

Jersey businesses pay employee and employer Social Security contributions from the date an employee starts work, regardless of how long the employee has been living in Jersey. The employer must have a business license and have permission to employ any “licensed” or “registered” staff.  Definitions of these can be found at the following link:

Residential and employment statuses and what they mean

Their employees build entitlement for contributory benefits and the old age pension under the Social Security scheme’s rules according to how long they work and pay contributions for in Jersey.

Non-resident businesses must also have a business license to operate in Jersey.

The non-resident business would pay employer and employee Social Security contributions for any employees who are ordinarily resident in Jersey. A person is ordinarily resident in the country they consider to be their home.

The non-resident business would not pay Social Security contributions in Jersey for any employees who are not ordinarily resident in Jersey. The business can continue to pay Social Security contributions in the country their employees are resident in for up to 12 months, rather than paying contributions in Jersey. This time limit is a guide because it also depends on whether Jersey has a Social Security reciprocal agreement with the other country, which could set out a different approach or length of time. These employees will not build entitlement for contributory benefits or the old age pension in Jersey.

Are a construction worker's earnings subject to Jersey Social Security contributions?

​Resident employer 

​Non-resident employer

​Resident worker​YesYes​
​Non-resident worker ​Yes​No

Worker self-isolation exemption

Every passenger arriving in Jersey is required to isolate unless granted permission not to do so. Where it is critical to the running of a service or business for a person to travel to the island and work during the isolation period, permission may be granted not to isolate. Applications for permission not to isolate should be made by the Jersey based employer or contractor a minimum of 5 days in advance.

Permission not to isolate is only given in cases where the risk of COVID-19 transmission can be appropriately reduced while at work and where it would be inappropriate for the person to complete the isolation period before working.

Permission not to isolate is only for the period of work or travelling to and from work; at all other times the person must isolate during the required period. Unless the work is exceptionally urgent or time critical, workers will normally be required to isolate until they have received a first negative test result before starting work.

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