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Is doing a remote inernship from another country legal?


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Andrew’s Answer

If you're an unpaid intern, then there are probably no problems. But if you're being paid then it does introduce a few difficulties. I know because I've worked remotely for companies in different countries. An internship that is paid is the same as a regular job in the eyes of tax authorities (for the most part).

There are 3 general approaches to something like this:

1. The company in question has a subsidiary in your country. A subsidiary is basically a legal entity that is registered in your country as its own company, even if the parent company is outside of your country. This is generally applicable to larger companies and countries. It's also usually a pain for the company to set up so they won't do it until there is a critical mass of their employees in that country. You would be a full time employee in this case (even if just for 4 months or something).

2. Work as a contractor for the company. You are classified as "self-employed" in your country and you simply bill the company for your services (number of hours worked). This means you don't get benefits from the company as they need to treat you as a contractor. This is the simplest and most likely option.

3. There's a third option where there are companies set up to basically act as a middleman in exactly these situations. They'll have a company set up in your country and you'll "work" for them as an employee. This company will then contract your services to the company you actually want to work for. A bit complicated and probably something the company would have to have set up originally.

Tax authorities are different in each country, my examples are specifically for being based out of Canada, but most Western countries would be similar. Good luck!


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Arden’s Answer

To legally intern in another country, you will need to follow the international guidelines and requirements outlined by that specific country. Good luck!

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Lauren’s Answer

Hi Kelly,

This is a great question for the company that you might intern with and their legal department. There may be tax implications for remote work from another country. However, given the push for virtual work, it seems like a possibility if you can clear the legal hurdle.

Thanks,

Lauren

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Chi’s Answer

I don't think so since I have not read any about doing an abroad remote internship illegal.

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Ruth’s Answer

With remote / virtual work environments, I would guess it will become more common. I believe it would depend on the company.
Good luck!

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