If you work on board cruise ships and are resident in the UK, you may be entitled to claim your UK tax back under the Seafarers Earnings Deduction (SED) rules if you are PAYE. Alternatively, if you are paid gross, you may be exempt from UK tax SED. If you are UK resident and paid gross, you need to declare your income in the UK regardless of whether or not you have a claim. If sufficient time has not been spent out of the UK, you will be liable to pay UK tax. The conditions for a SED claim are as follows;

  • In very basic terms have spent more than 183 days out of the UK during a 365-day period (first year, although it is slightly more complicated than that because you do need to also satisfy 'the half day rule'
  • You are on an employment contract (cannot be self employed)
  • You visit at least one foreign port in each tax year with each separate employer

If you think you have a claim, please send the relevant information below, together with the completed enrolment forms;

  • Photocopy from your discharge book
  • If not shown in your discharge book, proof of a foreign port
  • Boarding cards if you flew out to join your vessel earlier than the date shown in your discharge book, the same with returning back to the UK
  • Details of any courses or holidays abroad, such as flight tickets, boarding cards, accommodation receipts, or visa/credit cards receipts
  • P60/P45 if PAYE
  • If paid gross, wage slips or bank statements showing the gross amounts received
  • Employment contract