Hong Kong Salaries Tax – Retirement Benefit

Payment to an employee from an approved retirement scheme (not a MPF scheme):

• The portion attributable to employee’s contribution is not taxable.
• The portion attributable to the employer’s contribution is not taxable if it is paid upon death, incapacity or retirement.
• The portion attributable to the employer’s contribution (the accrued benefit) is not taxable if it is paid on termination of employment with services for more than 120 months. For termination of employment with service less than 120 months, the exemption limit for the accrued benefit is called “proportionate benefit” which is defined as: the accrued benefit * no. of completed month of service / 120. Any excess over the limit is taxable.
• If an employee withdraws a sum representing the employer’s contribution not because of termination of employment, retirement, death or incapacity, the sum will be wholly assessable. This happens where an employee withdraws all money upon change of retirement scheme while his employment is still going on with his employer.
• If part of the retirement benefit is used to set off the Long Service Payment or Severance Payment under the Employment Ordinance, the amount of set-off is deductible from the taxable amount.
• The above assessing practices are for general guidance. Special rules apply to civil servants, teachers of subsidized schools and certain employees of charitable institutions.

An employee can claim deduction for his mandatory contribution to a recognized retirement scheme. The maximum deduction is $12,000 per year.