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  • Brennand
  • Veteran

    • 101

    • February 27, 2013, 08:31:26 pm
    • Gyeongnam, Hadong-gun, Hwagae-myeon
Paying bills and taxes when leaving Korea
« on: July 18, 2016, 09:35:00 am »
Hey all,
I'm about to leave Korea and I'm curious what others have done about paying bills and income taxes when leaving Korea for good. 

Chances are, I will be billed for gas and electricity I will have used but the bills will not arrive until I have left the country.  Also, since my taxes aren't deducted from every pay check I always pay at the end of the year.  What do I need to do about the unpaid taxes from the last few months?

I don't want to screw over the next teacher and I also don't want to have any trouble when I come back a year from now.  Should I just leave some money in my Korean bank accounts and get my coteacher to send me pictures of unpaid bills for me to transfer money to?  I would love to hear what others have done.  Thanks!


  • gideonvasquez
  • Super Waygook

    • 461

    • August 27, 2015, 08:42:34 am
    • Uisung - Gyeongbuk-do
Re: Paying bills and taxes when leaving Korea
« Reply #1 on: July 18, 2016, 12:14:24 pm »
You can ask to have the bills up to a certain date given to you. If you are staying for a little bit after your contract ends then that would be an option. Call the gas/electric people and have them send those. If you don't know how then ask the administration people. If you are in a school-rented apartment then they would be the people handling the bills after you leave anyway.

Also, it is important to check for a water bill. Most places I know of have one large water bill for an annual period. If you ask for that then the school won't be on the hook for that. When the horror stories Korean admins. talk about midnight runs and such it is usually a several hundred thousand water bill that really gets to them.

You might be able to do the pictures and transfer while overseas but you could also try and get your bills electronically. I know electricity has an option for that somewhere (I didn't every sign up for it because I like the paper-trail it leaves) on their website. Same for most gas companies too I assume.

For taxes I would suggest contacting the nearest tax office to you. Call the national English help-line or go in person. They will try and calculate your tax up to a certain point and give you an invoice.


  • Brennand
  • Veteran

    • 101

    • February 27, 2013, 08:31:26 pm
    • Gyeongnam, Hadong-gun, Hwagae-myeon
Re: Paying bills and taxes when leaving Korea
« Reply #2 on: July 21, 2016, 09:45:02 am »
Thank you so much!  I will try to hunt down a tax office.


Re: Paying bills and taxes when leaving Korea
« Reply #3 on: July 21, 2016, 09:55:04 am »
Are you at public school, or hagwon?  Are you leaving after completing your contract, or are you leaving early?

If you are at public school the school office will handle your tax.  They will pay your final salary with all final taxes and deductions sorted.  They may also arrange for the final utility bills to be calculated on the last day and ask you to pay them in cash.  If not, call the utility company and tell them your last day so they can send someone to take a reading.  Or call your landlord.  But really, this should not be on you to arrange.

If you are at a hagwon this should still happen.  The hagwon is responsible for calculating and deducting your tax.

There is a procedure for this.  Ask your handler.


  • Brennand
  • Veteran

    • 101

    • February 27, 2013, 08:31:26 pm
    • Gyeongnam, Hadong-gun, Hwagae-myeon
Re: Paying bills and taxes when leaving Korea
« Reply #4 on: July 25, 2016, 08:12:35 am »
Are you at public school, or hagwon?  Are you leaving after completing your contract, or are you leaving early?

If you are at public school the school office will handle your tax.  They will pay your final salary with all final taxes and deductions sorted.  They may also arrange for the final utility bills to be calculated on the last day and ask you to pay them in cash.  If not, call the utility company and tell them your last day so they can send someone to take a reading.  Or call your landlord.  But really, this should not be on you to arrange.

If you are at a hagwon this should still happen.  The hagwon is responsible for calculating and deducting your tax.

There is a procedure for this.  Ask your handler.

Thank you.  I'm at a public school.  I figured the school office would be the one to take care of it but my handler just seems to have an aneurysm every time I ask him about it and since he never knows what's going on, I just assumed I'd have to take matters into my own hands.  Good to know the it's the office's job.