Global COVID-19 Individual Income Tax Responses [Update]

    Apr 15, 2020 @ 09:55 AM / by Jeremy Piccoli

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    COVID-19: Individual Income Tax Responses

    The economy, healthcare systems, and our broader communities are all being impacted by the global COVID-19 pandemic. In response, countries across the globe are acting swiftly to address the socioeconomic impact of the pandemic, including, but not limited to:

    • Traveling and gathering restrictions
    • Public funding expenditures
    • Corporate/VAT/self-employment amendments
    • Remote working guidance, and unemployment benefits

    This update is intended to focus solely on the responses that governments have made with regards to individual income taxation as of April 14, 2020. This post is an update of my original article published on March 31, 2020. Numerous notes and locations have been added to this expanded version.


    Country-by-country Individual Income Tax Responses


    • Temporarily reduced minimum drawdown rates for superannuation.
    • Temporary early release of superannuation, up to $10,000 of 2019-2020 superannuation, and $10,000 in 2020-2021.
    • $750 tax-exempt payments to social security, veteran, and other income support recipients and concession card holders: first round: 3/31/20, second round: 7/13/20.


    • Filing deadline extended to August 31, 2020.


    • Automatic two-month extension of tax year 2019: individual income tax return due date moved to May 12, 2020. No penalties or late payment interest will be assessed.
    • Deferral of payment of withholding and/or personal income tax for individuals able to demonstrate they are negatively impacted.


    • Taxable income support payment to eligible workers with loss of income, CAD 2,000/month, up to four months. In order to receive the payment, an individual must meet the eligibility requirements:
        • Have stopped working due to COVID-19, and not have access to paid leave or other income support
        • Be sick, quarantined, or taking care of someone who is sick with COVID-19
        • Be a working parent who must stay home without pay to care for children
        • Be employed, but not being paid because of an employer directive
        • Be a wage earner or self-employed individual who would not otherwise be eligible for Employment Insurance
        • Not have voluntarily terminated their employment
    • The minimum required annual withdrawal payments from Registered Retirement Income Funds (RRIFs) and Registered Pension Plans is reduced by 25% for 2020.
    • The goods and services tax (GST) credit is doubled for the 2019-2020 benefit year
    • 6-month suspension on the payment of interest and principal on Canadian student loans, to September 30, 2020
    • Temporary increase of the Child Care Benefit, up to $300 per child
    • Filing deadline extended to June 1, 2020.


    • Temporary personal income tax exemption for tourism and aviation sector employees.


    • Subsidies and bonuses received by medical workers participating in epidemic control and treatment are exempt from individual income tax.
    • Charitable contributions to epidemic control and treatment are fully deductible for individual income tax.

    Czech Republic

    • Filing deadline extended to July 1, 2020. No penalties or late payment interest will be assessed.


    • Filing deadline extended to September 1, 2020.


    • Temporary suspension of contributions to the mandatory funded pension scheme.


    • Reduced hours compensation benefit rules have been adjusted to conform to current needs.
    • Enforcement measures and late payment penalties are waived until December 31, 2020.

    Hong Kong

    • Payment deadline for salaries tax and personal assessment are automatically extended by three months.


    • Temporary abolition of payroll taxes and social insurance contributions for taxpayers in defined affected sectors (hospitality, transportation, entertainment, etc.)


    • Filing deadline extended to April 30, 2020.


    • Companies must pay an extraordinary bonus of EUR 100 for the month of March to all employees with annual income less than EUR 40,000 in the previous year.
    • 15 days parental leave at 50% wage, or a EUR 600 bonus for employees with children under the age of 12.


    • Filing deadline extended to June 30, 2020.


    • Filing deadline extended to April 16, 2020.


    • 90-day payment deferral of individual income tax and social security contributions due in March, April, and May 2020.


    • A one-time emergency income grant of NAD 750 to eligible Namibian citizens between the ages of 18 and 60


    • Deferral of payment of individual income tax for individuals able to demonstrate they are negatively impacted.

    New Zealand

    • Permanent increase in social welfare benefits.
    • Temporary doubling of the Winter Energy Payment.
    • Enabling working families with children to receive the Work Tax Credit, without meeting the minimum working hours test.
    • Threshold to pay provisional income tax for tax year 2020/2021 increased from NZD 2,500 to NZD 5,000.


    • 180-day moratorium on residential mortgage obligations obtained by individual contributors under the Nigerian Housing Fund (NHF).


    • Employers obligation to withhold 10% of salary for private pension contributions is suspended.


    • Filing deadline extended to June 30, 2020.


    • Filing deadline extended to July 31, 2020.

    Puerto Rico

    • Filing deadline extended to July 15, 2020.
    • Income tax exemption of assistance payments granted by employers, and special distributions from retirement accounts.


    • Filing deadline extended from April 18, 2020 to May 31, 2020
    • Central Provident Fund (CPF) contributions are not required on the reimbursement of expenses (such as meals, transportation, lodging) for employees working in a different location due to COVID-19 issues, such as working from home or overseas. Cash allowances given to employees would still be subject to CPF contributions.

    South Africa

    • Tax subsidy of ZAR 500/month for the next four months for private sector employees earning less than ZAR 6,500/month.


    • Deferral of payment deadline of tax not exceeding EUR 30,000 from March 13, 2020 to May 30, 2020.


    • Filing deadline for impacted individuals extended to June 30, 2020.


    • Filing deadline extended to August 31, 2020.
    • Health insurance premium deduction increased from THB 15,000 to THB 25,000.

    United Kingdom

    • Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) is expanded for eligible individuals diagnosed with COVID-19, or those that are unable to work due to self-isolation.
    • HMRC will reimburse 80% of furloughed workers wage costs, up to £2,500 per month. Employers can choose to cover the remaining wage gap.
    • Universal credit standard allowance increased by £1,000 per year, and the minimum income floor is suspended.
    • Off-payroll working rules, designed to address non-compliance in pay and employment taxes of contractors, are delayed 12 months to April 6, 2021.

    United States:


    • Introduction of a new tax called ‘Sanitary Emergency COVID-19 Tax’, levied on income derived from personal services rendered to the state, departmental governments, state entities and decentralized services during April and May 2020 (and possible extension of additional 3 months).


    • Payment deadline for the 2019 personal income tax return is extended to December 31, 2020.


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    Topics: International Tax, Global Mobility, News, Global Compensation, Mobility trends, Tax, International Tax Summaries, International Tax Guide, United States, Global Mobility News, Coronavirus, COVID-19

    Jeremy Piccoli

    Written by Jeremy Piccoli

    Jeremy joined AIRINC in the fall of 2012 and is responsible for managing AIRINC’s International Tax Guide and tax calculator products, as well as consulting with clients. Prior to joining AIRINC, Jeremy spent more than 6 years with PricewaterhouseCoopers’ International Assignment Services practices in Hartford and Boston, providing tax compliance and consulting services to multinational companies and their expatriate population. He received his B.S. with a concentration in Accounting and a Master of Science in Accounting from the University of Connecticut. Jeremy is an Enrolled Agent, a federally licensed tax practitioner who specializes in taxation.