Complete guide for working with foreign clients


13 May 2021
As an independent contractor, you can work with anyone as long as having a stable Internet connection. It is common to work with international clients as a freelancer. The time difference and geographical location can be your advantage.

As an independent contractor, you can work with anyone as long as having a stable Internet connection. It is common to work with international clients as a freelancer. The time difference and geographical location can be your advantage. You can deliver the work once the international client needs the project. Here is a completed guide when working with foreign clients, including job contracts. We conduct detailed research and cover all of the essentials parts in this article.

Advantages of working with international clients

  • Wider the chance for getting more projects: The opportunity is always there for you once you open to working with an overseas client. 7.9 billion people live around the world. You are not limited to the local market.
  • More cross-cultural insight: Each culture has a different point of view. You understand more about cultural differences by working with them and meeting international friends without walking out from home.

What to check when working with a foreign client

No matter where you are, taxes are always a complicated and important thing to take care of. The required form is varies depending on the country. Some countries only charge the personal income tax as long as yearly income does not exceed a certain amount. If you live abroad, there is a possibility that you need to fill the form for both the resident country and home country during the tax year. You may need a consulate with a professional accountant for reporting persona income tax. Always keep all of the invoices and job contracts and have access to them.

Check the time difference before start working

You need to consider the time difference when working with freelance clients in different time zone. The time difference is one of the obstacles during working with the client in different time zones. You may not be available when the client needs you. It is hard to arrange an online meeting due to the time difference. Ask the necessary questions and check the time difference before start working. You can use a time difference calculator or simply add the time to your phone.

How to prepare a job contract for an overseas client

Every work must start from signing a job contract. Some companies may have a general job contract, especially for working with a freelancer. No matter the location and type of the client, always sign a job contract before start working. The format can be the same as working with the local client. If the client hesitant to sign a contract for protecting their right. Then you may think twice before working with them. The job contract should contain the essential details, for example, the scope of work in specific details, the deadline for delivering the work, the currency of remuneration. For example, if you are in charge of designing 10 graphics for social media. The scope of work should contain this detail instead of providing graphic service. The form of the contract does not need to be in print form. You can simply send an online contract and ask for an electronic signature.

How to increase the safety before starting working

A deposit is an advance payment and works as extra protection for both sides. Usually, the client will send a small amount of the fees as a deposit after signing the job contract. We recommend that you start working until receiving the deposit. Some clients may feel hesitant to send the deposit. As their bank will charge an additional fee for the overseas payment. A job contract and deposit are for protecting your right. Those steps are quick final checks before start working with them.

How to receive foreign currency payment

The international client may pay the remuneration in another currency. Have an account for receiving the foreign currency can avoid the additional service fee. Usually, the bank can automatically cover the foreign currency for you, but the conversation rate may be less favorable. Also, both the bank and middle bank will charge a service fee for receiving the payment. In Useme, we offer three currencies for freelancers to choose from. The freelancers can choose from Euro(EUR), British pound(GBP), and dollar(USD).

How to increase efficiency

Time is precious for freelancers. You work more effectively with helpful tools. The right communication tool can save you from extra discussion and stay up late for meetings. Be mindful some software automatically hides the information when the system receives too much message. You can also visualize the workflow with a project management tool. This way, the client can check the process directly. To easily book a meeting without sending extra emails, you can provide a Calendly link. The system will automatically transfer the time difference, and the client can choose from the available time. You can use an application such as Krisp to cut off back noise during the meeting.

B2B settle: VAT invoice and reserve VAT invoice

The international client rarely agrees to cooperate in the form of a simple bill. As this form of cooperation cannot be considered as a tax-deductible expense. The foreign client prefers to receive a reserve VAT invoice. Because the invoice is a formal cooperation form for the international client and the independent contractor. Moreover, the reserve VAT invoice only contains the net amount, so they pay the VAT amount in their home country. This form of cooperation is cost-effective and easier for the business. To issue a reserved VAT invoice, you need to have a company and register as an EU VAT player. You can easily do it with Useme.

Working with a foreign client is exciting. You gain more experience without leaving the living room. The whole process can be very easier as long as you choose the right forms of cooperation and communication tool. With Useme, you can send a VAT invoice to the client without opening a company or going through any additional process.

how to send a tax invoice in simple form 3 Complete guide for working with foreign clients

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