Chapter 4: Working in Guernsey
Guernsey’s economy has evolved radically over the past 50 years. From ship-building and granite exports, Guernsey’s booming finance industry is now its main source of income and employment. As a successful International Finance Centre, approximately a third of Guernsey’s total income comes from financial services such as banking, fiduciary, fund management, private wealth and insurance.
Guernsey also continues to prosper and diversify into other areas and has a thriving non-finance industry. It is home to Specsavers’ creative department and Healthspan’s headquarters, and is home to more than 1000 people working in the thriving creative and digital industries.
Guernsey’s traditional industries of agriculture and horticulture – specifically dairy and seafood – continue to contribute much to the economy. Guernsey’s tourism sector is a key sector, as with over 300,000 visitors every year, this allows the island’s hospitality businesses to thrive.
Right to Work Law
The law requires that if you wish to work in Guernsey, you must have a valid ‘Right to Work’ document from the Housing Authority confirming that you are lawfully housed.
Tax in Guernsey
As a self-governing dependency, Guernsey has its own tax system that meets OECD standards.
Tax for all residents is as follows:
- 20% income tax
- No capital gains tax
- No VAT tax
- No inheritance tax
- No wealth tax
- No council tax
- No income tax on first £10k of earnings
Company Tax rates are as follows:
- 0% – rate applicable to most companies
- 10% – rate for certain banking, insurance, fiduciary companies
- 20% – rate for utilities and profits from property rental and development activities
If moving to Guernsey, you need to register with the Guernsey Income Tax Department and all residents must file an annual tax return.
Guernsey’s social security scheme funds healthcare under the Specialist Health Insurance Scheme and provides benefits for work, sickness benefit, invalidity benefit, industrial injury benefit, unemployment benefit, old-age pension, bereavement benefit, death grant and maternity benefit.
The social security scheme is funded by payments from the earnings and income-related contribution scheme paid for by Guernsey’s residents. Employees pay 6.6% of gross earnings towards the Social Security Department, with employers contributing a further 6.6%. Those who are self employed pay 11.0%. Social security is applied to everyone over school leaving age. An alternative rate applies for those who do not work but earn revenue from other sources.