W-8BEN on your own & 30% withhold

Like 100k invested in VT? (1564 shares by the end of 2018).

In 2018 you’d have lost 15% of dividends = 382 CHF

i think 30% would be lost here, not 15%.
my understanding:

  • for us based etf (vt, etc), 3o%* of dividend taxed away
    – broker qualified -> w8-ben by broker itself -> 15% back -> da-1 by investor -> 15% back ->0% lost
    – broker not qualif: w8-ben not possible (15% lost) -> da-1 not (i am not positive here) possible (15% lost)-> edit: 30% lost
  • for irland based etf (vwrl): 15% of div lost (not more, not less), no matter which broker, no refund possible

*Edit: only the the us part of the etf is taxed at 30% (for VT that would be 55.7%; for WVRL 55.0%): so actually the taxation is:

  • tax on dividend for us part of etf: dividend% x30% x 55.7% (respectiv 55.0%)
  • tax on dividend for rest of the world (not us) part of the etf: depends on etf domicile and its tax treaty with every single country

More and more I read those posts…more and more I get confused…

I had dividends paid lately for the ETF: iShares STOXX Europe Select Dividend 30 UCITS ETF in Euros bought in IB and I got 0%, yes… 0% withheld by IB, or Europe…

Don’t understand why they are withholding the 15% to you… If we are all in Switzerland!


Start here:

1 Like

I don’t see 30% in your examples; either 0% (Swiss qualified broker for US ETF) or 15% (Swiss not qualified broker for US ETF; or any broker for IE ETF). Can you elaborate more?


Didn’t call them.
But a knowledgeable guy from Postfinance told me that they used to provide W-8BEN until 2015 (when they operated through BCV, which is TradeDirect), but from 2015, Postfinance e-trading is backed by Swissquote, and Postfinance doesn’t provide W-8BEN (so I suspect also Swissquote doesn’t, i.e. they’re not QI). But we need to 2ble check

Thanks. I’ll read the complete post… is long.
Is really a bit messy all the tax treatment by the different countries/brokers … Hope one day is going to more unified!

See my 2 edit in the post

I think that 30% withhold (not tax) applies to all the VT (not only to the US part), for the reason that VT is a US ETF.

The case in which it applies only to US stocks inside the ETF (55.7%) is for non-US ETFs. And in that case the tax is 15%, paid by the ETF, so not reclaimable.

Does it make sense?

Swissquote did , at least a while ago.

This question was raised some times and according to that Swissquote is QI.

I think you are right. Thank you.

This is correct to my knowledge as well.