Geography and Rates
Thread poster: xxxwilliamson

Local time: 12:42
Dutch to English
+ ...
Mar 15, 2002

Some countries are fiscally friendlier than others. Some even have a \"free-zone\" (\"Jebel-Ali free-zone\" in the UAE) for businesses who want to start there.

If you live outside the E.U. for more than 18 months, no at taxes at all have to be paid to the E.U.-Member-State, where you reside.

I have friends worldwide and if I wanted, I could go and live either in Russia or in China for a year or longer. Translation is a job you can do almost everywhere where you can put a plug in the wall and connect your pc to a \"high-speed\" internet connection.

But I wonder what rates would apply if I make a translation based in Peking instead of in Brussels? Would I be able to charge the same rates or do they depend upon the geographical location?

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Local time: 06:42
German to English
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You can move, if you want to... Mar 15, 2002

I would think, it is always supply and demand.

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Jacek Krankowski  Identity Verified
English to Polish
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Why disclosing your address? Mar 15, 2002

For billing purposes I would keep my \"better\" address even if I \"temporarily\" moved to China.

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kbamert  Identity Verified
Local time: 12:42
French to German
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legal domicile of the client (agency) Mar 15, 2002


I think in the first place it is a question of the legal domicile of the translator. In a country with low living costs your are able to bid with lower rates (so living in a low cost country and pretending to live in a high cost country and asking for the high rates of the high cost country would be a smart move).

In the second place, the legal domicile of the client is as well important. A manufacturer in the USA may be able to pay higher rates than a manufacturer in Ghana, if there is any...


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Local time: 06:42
English to German
+ ...
What if they ask for your phone or fax number? Mar 16, 2002

I\'m also looking for such an option for the future, but there are a few problems with it I couldn\'t solve yet.

What if the agency wants to call you and you list a phone number in China? Then you already gave yourself away. But even if you get some free Internet voicemail with a U.S. area code and number (to pretend you\'re still in the U.S.), most of the time they\'ll want to fax you the document to be translated. Okay, you can get free U.S.-based Internet fax numbers, too, but sometimes they also want to mail you something that you\'ll have to sign. Now again, what address are you going to give them, a Chinese one? Well, you can certainly have a P.O. box here in the U.S., but you\'ll have to pay for it every month and who\'s gonna forward your mail to China? And even if you pay for forwarding, once you send a reply back with a Chinese stamp on it, you gave yourself away! The U.S. Postal Service forwards it for you anywhere in the world for free, but only for 3 months. Then you\'ll have to fill out another yellow card and mail it in (to your local U.S. post office) from within the U.S. and probably they won\'t let you continue it every 3 months for 20 years.

Then there\'s also the tax issue. One of the things they might ask for (beside a signed confidentiality agreement) is your social security number. Sometimes they just want it by e-mail, but if they\'re proper, they\'ll send you a form to fill out along with a form to verify your employability with Immigration. So they keep your SSN on file, in case they get audited by the IRS and they\'ll send in your other form to the Immingration & Naturalization Service (INS). So now you\'re taking 2 risks, if you are thinking not to pay any taxes or perhaps you don\'t have a legal status (work authorization) in the U.S.

So basically, I don\'t know how to do it safely, legally and without any risks of losing at least money, if not your legal status in the U.S. And of course, you might not be necessarily in the U.S. where you want to move from, so I think the situation is different in every country you\'re moving from plus you\'re moving to.

[ This Message was edited by: on 2002-03-16 08:59 ]

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Local time: 19:42
English to Chinese
+ ...
Simple Answer Mar 20, 2002

Yes, of course, translation rates are very much lower in China, and Taiwan where I live! But that doesn\'t matter if you can get big American and European clients! We offer prices to them lower than they can find but higher than here so we get paid more.

How do you move here without using your national identity with companies in your country? It\'s simple. Just start a company because their companies can do business with anybody in the world, and working as a company has many more benefits. You can also make much more money and legally hire people.

This would be a good tax solution for Americans or Germans with high taxes. You open your company in another country. Open a separate company in your home country (hire a secretary) and whatever business it makes, always outsource to your off shore company so there is little or no profit to pay tax in your own country. And anybody can do business with you! Pay yourself from your off shore company.

It takes some planning but I know lots of people who do this. Good luck!

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