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Need to get lease stamped quick for tax relief

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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    16

    Need to get lease stamped quick for tax relief

    Hi GeoExpat,

    I got my new place. Signed a one year lease. Now, I need to get it stamped, ideally in a day, so I can apply for the tax relief on rental. Two Questions follow.

    I read that I can do it online via eStamp. I went to the website to look. To do that, you need to have a E-stamp account if you're a business, or a E-Tax account or digital certificate if you are an individual. I'm not a business so lets rule out the first option.

    To apply for E-Tax, there's processing time as I'll get my password in my mail. I don't know how to get a digital certificate.

    Question one: What is the fastest way, as in within a day, to get my lease agreement stamped. I don't know what is a digital certificate. And going to Stamp Office at Wan Chai takes a day. Alternatively, can I ask my friend who has a E-Tax account to stamped it for me?

    Question two: I'm doing this without the owner knowing. If I do go to Stamp Office, would I be able to get my lease stamped without the owner present? Yes, I myself will be paying the 0.25% of the total lease.

    Thank you.

    Willy


  2. #2

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Yuen Long
    Posts
    1,515

    Takes 30min at the office in Wan Chai. You give them 2 copies of the lease and they stamp them both. Supposed to be one for you and one for the landlord. Both parties do not have to be present so can be done without your landlord knowing you will do it.


  3. #3

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    16

    Hi Flat Hunter,

    Thank you for the quick answer. There lies the problem. I only have my copy of the lease. The other is with the owner.

    If one could do it online without the actual submission of the lease, I was under the impression, the owner doesn't need to know or be present. Surely if you could it online why the need to have both physical copies if doing it the conventional way.

    If I go to the Stamp Office with just my copy of the lease, what's the chance I can get it stamped? Would they turn me away and say come back with the owner. Even if they stamp just mine, I'm good because I just show my copy to my company for the tax relief.

    Thank you.
    Willy


  4. #4

    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Yuen Long
    Posts
    1,515

    Normal practise is for them to stamp two copies. However, they will stamp just one.


  5. #5

    Join Date
    May 2010
    Posts
    4,715
    simonkwan likes this.

  6. #6

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    18,790

    You can retrospectively claim the tax relief once it is stamped. No need to worry about getting it stamped in less than 24 hours or anything like that.

    Last edited by TheBrit; 21-11-2015 at 09:36 PM.

  7. #7
    Kiz
    Kiz is online now

    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    590

    I got one copy stamped the other day in wan chai it took 15 minutes.

    wtbhotia likes this.

  8. #8

    Join Date
    Feb 2011
    Location
    Hong Kong
    Posts
    6,282

    I think you have 30 days to stamp it without any penalty.

    Why are you trying to do this so quietly? The landlord and tenant should share the costs. Not sure if your landlord is trying to avoid paying taxes or what the deal is there. Because the lease needs to be stamped for the landlord to have his protections.


  9. #9

    Join Date
    Sep 2015
    Posts
    16

    I need it quickly not because I'm passing the legal requirement with the government. It is because I need to show my company, a month after I joined them, the stamp lease agreement to get the tax relief. I was floating with temp places and only get my permanent place on Saturday. Monday is the deadline for submission to my company's HR.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kiz
    I got one copy stamped the other day in wan chai it took 15 minutes.
    Sounds good. I'm going to do this tomorrow during lunch.

    Quote Originally Posted by MandM!
    Why are you trying to do this so quietly? The landlord and tenant should share the costs.
    The agent told me that the landlord doesn't want to get it stamped, EVEN if I bear the costs. To him, it's a matter of getting it stamped and not of the cost. When I ask him why? the agent doesn't know. Then I ask further whether are there any legal implications for the landlord if the agreement is stamped. The agent didn't have a clear answer but he seems to suggest no. I get it stamped, no implications for the landlord, I get my tax relief. Everyone's happy.

    I want to cover myself in the event that one day, the government decides to call the landlord and asked him to pay X amount because he leased his place. From what the agent said and what I've read, the ONLY cost is the tax paid for getting it stamped. So I did the calculations. If I pay the 0.25% stamp duty tax, I get to save net HK$400 a month. Sounds good to me.

    I thought about it realistically. Given the super high turn over of rental in Hong Kong, I highly doubt the government will look through the stamped agreements, picked out this one and just decide to call the landlord to check whether he is aware his property is stamped. And even if that happens, I'll probably back home in my own country.

  10. #10

    Join Date
    Oct 2010
    Posts
    18,790

    The contract has much less legal force if it is not stamped. For your own protection, well worth getting it stamped. Your landlord sounds very dodgy.

    And your HR sound like they impose arbitrary rules for no reason

    simonkwan likes this.

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