There is a significant difference in value placed on a gardener and a household servant in the computation of taxable benefits granted to an employee.
- For a gardener, it is $35 per month or actual wages paid by employer, whichever is lower.
- Whereas for a household servant, it is based on the actual wages paid by employer.
Perhaps the “discrepancy” could be due to:-
- the gardener’s thingy has been around since the British colonial days where expatriates stayed in bungalows with gardens groomed by gardeners getting $35 salary
- the household servant is a more recent phenomenon
- or is it that gardeners are part-timers who come around once a while to touch up on your garden
Whatever it is, I am just trying to cheekily explain the “discrepancy” in IRAS’ valuation of a gardener as compared to a household servant.
So can I advise expatriate employees (if there is any left) to ask their employers to hire “gardeners” who can do household chores to effectively lower your taxable employment income? 🙂