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Global Helicopter Pilots Association

Old 11th Jul 2009, 03:11
  #41 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Posts: 9
Union friendly?

Everything that CHC management has done so far shows they are not going to go down without a fight. Reading the CIRB ruling shows they are happy to misrepresent themselves as they attempt to introduce outdated and invalid documentation to try to bolster their weak arguments.
They keep losing and they keep fighting because they are not union friendly and they fear losing total control over their domain. They are setting the tone, rather than trying to work it out, they just want to fight, so they will get the union they deserve.
They could make a strong show of good faith by accepting the CIRB decision since this is not the first round they have lost, but somehow I don't think they are going to start to be "union friendly" any time soon.

Don't expect them to start being nice simply because they lost the latest round, if they sense any chance to delay or deny the inevitable, they will continue to do battle. But how many times do they have to be told that they are wrong?
I imagine there will be a departure or two once the final, final court decision is reached and legal action is threatened for non-compliance. Once they have no legal recourse and the corporate level people realize that any sense of cooperation or goodwill has long disappeared a few people will get a golden parachute and sent on their way.
Speculation? Of course! This is a rumour network!

Union friend? Yeah, right. They will not go down gracefully, that is already clear after reading the 40 some pages of the CIRB ruling and certification documents.
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Old 16th Jul 2009, 19:31
  #42 (permalink)  
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 26
Next Stage

As of 16th July 2009, CHC Global Operations officially filed for a hearing with the Canadian Federal Court of Appeals. Their wish is that the court will overturn the CIRB rulings and that our application for collective bargaining be thrown out.

On the other hand, the GHPA has officially filed notification that we wish to meet with CHC GO management for the purpose of collective bargaining. We are awaiting their response. We will attempt to establish mutually agreed upon dates where we (GHPA) and CHC can meet to discuss the components of a CLA. The question is, with the case before the Canadian Federal Court of Appeal, can we expect CHC GO to move forward and bargain in good faith?

Frankly, to date CHC has not surprised me at all. I would expect that there would be NO good faith and that they will only come to the table kicking and screaming.

As with all legal proceedings on this level, I would expect that the final decision from the Federal Court of Appeal will take at least another year. Let's hope that they, like the CIRB, will find our attempts to organise legitimate and that CHC will finally talk to us (the pilots).
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Old 17th Jul 2009, 10:45
  #43 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 25
During this interim period AND given that the GHPA is the official (and legally) annointed representative body of the pilots.....I wonder if the GHPA is now in a position to legally call for STRIKE action if CHC GO remains recalcitrant ?????

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Old 18th Jul 2009, 13:35
  #44 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: LOS
Age: 63
Posts: 561
I am not surprised by this latest development, and rather than seeing this as a bad thing, I think it will further strengthen our resolve to see this thru, just as it did when they rejected our first attempt to negotiate.

Keep fighting us YVR and see how that works out for you in the end. You may just get the union YOU deserve

myassisgrass,

have the lawyers told you how many avenues of appeal that CHC have open to them? If they lose this one, what will be their next play?
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Old 18th Jul 2009, 20:25
  #45 (permalink)  
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 26
CHC has a 'right of appeal' with the Canadian Federal Court of Appeal. This is the avenue they are presently pursuing. If they fail in this attempt, they can appeal to the Supreme Court of Canada where they do not have 'right of appeal'. The Supreme Court must determine if the case is worth hearing and ruling on. They may very well decide not to hear the case. To the best of my knowledge, that is the end of the appeal process.

A previous post suggested striking as a possible work action should CHC continue to drag their heels. I would not like to consider that option until absolutely no other avenue is left open to us. We are a union, we have union rights. CHC has their right of appeal and it would appear they will use it.
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Old 18th Jul 2009, 20:43
  #46 (permalink)  
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 26
Union Pay vs Non-Union Pay

Here's an interesting extract from the GHPA website. I like the concept of = pay for = work.

How Do We Compare? (using top payrate)
Introduction
This should clearly be the question everyone asks when we wonder whether what we are getting paid is comparable to that our colleagues in other parts of the world receive.
It is no simple matter to deduce whether the salary paid to a pilot working in the North Sea is comparable to the salary paid to an equally experienced and qualified pilot working in say Azerbaijan. How best to make that comparison?
Regardless of how the numbers are compared there will be those who believe that the numbers are skewed or incorrect parameters and data have been used etc. Such disbelievers usually have an agenda of their own and would wish the outcome to be more in line with what they want to believe is reality rather than the truth of reality itself.
This document is a fairly amateur attempt to bring some light into the discussion about salary and become a starting point for future discussion and evaluation.
Where do we start? Well, the obvious should be the salaries paid for equivalent experience, qualifications and seniority in other areas of CHC’s operations. To find this information, as it is not forthcoming from the current management team, it is necessary to look to what the associations in other locations tell us.
Salaries
Principally we are concerned with the salaries paid to our colleagues in the area of Northern Europe and encompassing both Off-shore and Search and Rescue operations in the following locations:
A)The United Kingdom including England, Wales and Scotland.
B)Ireland
C)Norway
D)Denmark
E)The Netherlands
The CHC operations in these locations provide a number of different services although Off-shore services predominate and the crews are qualified and tasked similarly to CHC Global flight crews.
Information regarding salaries paid to pilots was obtained from the various Associations representing crews in Europe. However, it should be remembered that there is a vast difference in not only salaries but also in the various allowances that differing Associations have obtained for their respective employees.
Therefore, this exercise becomes a little like comparing apples to oranges rather than apples or oranges. To try to form a comparison that can make sense a number of assumptions have been made and some other issues ignored for the time being.
The salary that is used in all cases here is that paid to all Off-shore captains at the top rate of pay on their respective payrolls.
The value of salary paid to CHC global employees was calculated at CAD4,000 per month and a daily rate of CAD225 x 182 days worked (=CAD88,950).
Actual benefits and allowances vary very widely throughout the different companies and although these make a very significant difference in the take-home pay of some crews for the sake of simplicity these have, for now, been mostly ignored.
Finally, the issue of currency needs to be addressed as not all employees are paid in the same currency. Those is the UK are normally paid in British Pounds (GBP), those countries of Europe in the Euro Zone (Netherlands and Ireland) are paid in Euros (EUR), while Norwegian crews are paid in Norwegian Kroner (NOK) and Danes are paid in Danish Krone (DKK) and, of course, those hired out of Vancouver are paid in Canadian dollars (CAD).
In an effort to make this comparison more understandable all salaries have been converted to US dollars.
Therefore, the table of salary paid senior Off-shore captain in the various geographic locations is as follows:
Location
Scotia
CHC HS
Denmark*
Ireland
Netherlands
Canada
Salary in local currency
GBP93471
NOK1,137,426
EUR139,798
EUR130,053
EUR123,900
CAD88,950
Salary in USD
$184,138
$209,047
$206,062
$191,698
$182,629
$89,039

The following exchange rate assumptions are used:
GBP to USD 1.970 NOK to USD 5.441 EUR to USD 0.678 CAD to USD 0.998
These exchange rates were current as of 21th February 2008 and taken from the following website Currency Converter for 164 Currencies
*Denmark salaries could only be found posted in Euros (from the CHC Benchmark document, CHC Pilot Association)
Since this study is interested in the salary paid to CHC Global employees as it compares to other CHC companies then we can make the following comparison:
CHC Salary Comparison (Level 15 equivalent, not including benefits or allowances):
Company Location
UKScotia
CHC HS
Denmark
Ireland
Netherlands
CHC Global
Company Salary (USD)
$184,138
$209,047
$206,062
$191,698
$182,629
$89,039
CHC Global as %
48.4%
42.6%
43.2%
46.4%
48.8%
100%
Others as % of CHC Global
206.8%
234.8%
231.4%
215.3%
205.1%
100%

From this we can see that CHC global employees are paid at a rate ranging between 47.5% and 54.3% of their fellow employees in other CHC companies. Or, put differently, CHC European companies are earning anywhere from 84% to 110% more than CHC Global employees.
While this appears very significant there are other factors that come into play not the least of which are the cost of living and the cost of housing in any given geographic location.
So how do CHC Global employees compare in regard to our European colleagues?
Housing Prices
Housing numbers are definitely not as definitive as rates of pay. It has been far more difficult to find average housing prices across the Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development (OECD) of which all the above countries are members.
To come up with numbers certain assumptions have been made as although the numbers given for the price of the average home is based on the nationwide average. It was felt that this number was not fair in the case of Canada as the variation between geographic locations was very large, probably due to the size of the country. For example in 2007 house prices in Vancouver averaged about CAD581,000 while in Winnipeg the average price was only CAD175,000. The same wide spread in prices was not found in European locations likely due to the smaller size of the countries in question and the relatively large population base. Therefore, for the purpose of this study the average house price was used for all countries but along with the Canadian average we have also given the average price for the Greater Vancouver area. This was done because Vancouver is the location of CHC Global’s head office, and because many CHC Global crews are still hired from, and live, there.
Again, it was felt necessary, to convert the average price into US dollars to be able to make fair comparison. Exchange rate used was similar to the above example for wages and information on the average house price is from the Economist magazine survey.
So, with how do house prices stack up in the various locations?
Location
United Kingdom
Norway
Denmark
Ireland
Netherlands
Canada
Canada
Vancouver
Average House price
USD444,179
USD450,850

USD350,299

USD449,665

USD396,320

USD335,180
USD564,702
Canada as %
75.4%
74.3%
95.7%
74.5%
84.5%
100%
59.3%
Others as % of Canada
132.5%
134.5%
104.5%
134.1%
118.3%
100%
176.1%
Vancouver as %
128.1%
129%
132.3%
132%
164.3%
176.1%
100%

Figures are the most current that could be found.
Canada house prices from: http://www.nationwide.co.uk/hpi/historical/Q1_2008.pdf
UK House prices from: BBC NEWS | In Depth | UK House Prices | Overview
Irish house prices from: Ireland/Irish House Prices, Housing Market, Prices, NCB Stockbrokers, Index, 2009, Europe, Australia, US : Finfacts Ireland
Denmark, Norway and Netherlands house prices from: House Prices Worldwide - N
Immediately, it can be seen that although Canada as a whole has the cheapest house prices among those studied Vancouver has by far the highest house prices of any of the locations of the various CHC Companies.
How then do the salaries paid by the various companies compare to the price of housing. The following table gives an idea:
Location
United kingdom
Norway
Denmark
Ireland
Netherlands
Canada
Vancouver
Average House Price
USD444,179
USD450,850
USD350,299
USD449,665
USD396,320
USD335,180
USD564,702
Salary
$184,138
$209,047
$206,062
$191,698
$182,629
$89,039
USD89,039
Salaries as % of Housing Price
41.4%
46.3%
58.8%
42.6%
46.1%
26.5%
15.7%
House Price as multiple of Salary
2.41
2.15
1.69
2.34
2.17
3.76
6.34

Cost of Living
So, if Vancouver has the highest house prices but Canada overall the lowest house prices then how does Canada compare with the other OECD countries and CHC company locations with regard to the Cost of Living?
Here again, the best information available was to be found from the Economist magazine which publishes Cost of Living rankings for major cities around the globe twice annually. Information regarding Cost of Living was not found on a country by country basis but rather as a city comparison.
For example, in the latest Cost of Living comparison issued by the Economist in December of 2007 the most expensive city in the world was Oslo in Norway with other European cities being in the top 10. The benchmark city used in the economist survey is New York in the United States which is given the value of 100. The following table gives an idea of the cost of living.
Cost of Living
United Kingdom
Norway
Denmark
Ireland
Holland
Canada
City
London
Oslo
Copenhagen
Dublin
Amsterdam
Toronto
Ranking
3
1
2
4
16
19
Index (New York = 100)
125.9
144.2
129.8
122.7
103.6
99.7
Canada as %
79.2%
69.1%
76.8%
81.2%
96.2%
100%
Others as % of Canada
126.2%
144.63%
130.2%
123.0%
103.9%
100%

Cost of Living index from: Dublin fourth most expensive city of 71 global cites - Kuala Lumpur cheapest according to UBS report and then click on the following link: Prices and Earnings, 2008 update
Looking at the above table it is apparent that Toronto is less expensive than all the other cities in which we are interested, being more than 31% less expensive than Oslo in Norway but only marginally (4%) less expensive than Amsterdam.
Conclusions:
What deductions can be made then from the above data? Or more importantly, does it appear, from the numbers given that CHC Global employees are under paid in comparison to their compatriots in Europe? In a word, yes. There is enough information found to show that there is a large discrepancy between the various locations.
CHC Global employees are paid, on an average about 45.9% of their compatriots in Europe. Yet the cost of living in Canada, on average, is 82.4% of what it is in the European countries in our study and the cost of housing in Canada is, on average, 77.8% of what it is in European compatriots’ countries.
In other words the cost of housing and living in Canada is only about 20% less expensive on average than Europe, provided we exclude the exorbitant cost of housing in Vancouver. If Vancouver house prices were to be included then the discrepancy would be rather shocking with the CHC Global salary equal to no more than 15% of the cost of the average Vancouver home as opposed to some of those in Europe where the average salary paid is equal to 41% to 58% of the cost of a house. Even taking only Canada into account for the CHC Global employee the cost of a house is about 4 times the employee’s salary.
While it is cheaper to live in Vancouver than any of the other cities, and cheaper also to buy a house in Canada than elsewhere, these two facts do not assuage the lesser monies paid to CHC Global employees. Clearly it would not be a wise decision for a CHC Global employee to live in Vancouver where the cost of housing far outstrips the salary paid.
How much then are CHC Global employees underpaid given that their salaries are less than one half that of those in Europe yet the Cost of Living and the cost of housing (ignoring Vancouver) is only 20% less than Europe? Taking these items into account it would appear that the average CHC Global employee is grossly underpaid in relation to fellow CHC employees in Europe.
Taking the above study into account it would appear that the CHC Global salaries should be only about 20% less than those of the CHC European employees. In dollar terms the average salary paid in European CHC companies to an off-shore Captain at the top of the payscale is USD194,714, yet CHC Global equivalent captain only receives USD89,039 or 47.7% of the European equivalent even though, as we have seen above, the cost of living and house prices are about 80% of what they are in Europe. Using the above numbers, and if we wanted to see the equivalent pay for a CHC Global captain then the apparent salary for the CHC Global employee should then be USD155,768, or approximately 80% of the average European salary of USD194,714.
This puts a CHC Global employee at a minimum of USD66,736 disadvantage to an equivalent European employee and a dramatic salary restructuring would be needed to bring parity to the salary equation.
The above numbers clearly show that in every aspect of this comparison the average CHC Global employee is in a far worse financial position than his/her equivalent European counterpart.
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Old 19th Jul 2009, 02:42
  #47 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Oz
Posts: 27
Yes but..

The above figures can't be denied and paint a good likeliness of reality.

I live in Australia (but I'm a G.O.) and I make a good chunk less than my CHC Oz mates. Plus the buggars get a full month vacation/year.

However I would argue that the comparison based on living and buying houses in Canada is flawed. Many, if not half, of the G.O. pilots do not live in Canada. Many actually live in Europe. I have colleagues who are resident of Holland, U.K and France and all are G.O. pilots. Those guys would be short changed if the Canadian table of comparison is used.

I know I'm dreaming but why can't it just be "same work = same pay".
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Old 19th Jul 2009, 11:30
  #48 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: AFRICA
Posts: 153
Danger

Myassisgrass

Where do you put on your scale a CHC pilot on 6/6 based in Nigeria , going to work with an armed escort , and locked down in a camp with virtually no facilities

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Old 22nd Jul 2009, 00:30
  #49 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: A man of the world
Posts: 128
froggy pilot - where do you put him? On incentive pay surely?

I have a couple of questions to throw at this...

Canadian residents have quite a hefty advantage through the OETC - should this be factored in?

How with a globally dispersed workforce, not only in terms of work location but also in residence do we carry out the comparison to other non-Global CHC employees? There is, for many of us, advantages in being 6/6 rather than following northern European schedules as we can be more flexible about where we choose to live. There is a price we are willing to pay for that.

So, while these comparisons are interesting I cannot help but think the picture is skewed quite drastically UNLESS the benefits received by area are also considered - and that makes for some horrible number crunching I am sure.

As I understand it each pilot group around CHC have negotiated separately, and the particular interests of each will have been represented. Comparisons on basic salary are limited in scope when taken isolated and also need not be limited to CHC companies alone. It will be up to the GHPA to determine the interests of its' own members to determine what needs proposing for a collective agreement. The global dispersal will, I have no doubt, bring a greater array of issues of concern, and greater emphasis will be placed on these rather than simply pay alone.

Interesting times ahead, hopefully to the benefit of all.
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Old 22nd Jul 2009, 17:45
  #50 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2003
Location: AFRICA
Posts: 153
Cool

N Arslow
On incentive pay of course.


Myassisgrass
What's the point of publishing canadian and european salaries if you don't publish GO salaries (with incentive pay by location) and cost of living (food allowance or company food) ...


How to compare ?
That's the question.
In GO you have 182 working days plus travel plus simulator. That's how many nights a year away from home ? When a european or canadian just drive home after work.
What about the flying environement, like 45°C without airconditioning ,
What about flight hours and duty hours, it's different from a location to another one
Really difficult to compare
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 00:12
  #51 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Oz
Posts: 27
Yes but...

NA and FG.

Indeed it is very difficult to compare, if not impossible however MAiG provided a starting point to elaborate from. Much more than you guys did.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 07:20
  #52 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: A man of the world
Posts: 128
Um - I did not realise I had to offer a starting point so I think your rather supercilious sounding comment was unnecessary. However, as you wish, I will offer a starting point - the terms and conditions we are currently working to!!

Where we move on to from there will, I am sure, be through dialogue first with members of the GHPA and then with the company. As I suggested before, I believe for many of us salary will not be as high on the list as ensuring benefits reflect our location and occupation; I am not providing an exhaustive list and I have not polled my colleagues but off the top of my head areas to be considered/improved might be:
Loss of licence benefits
Paid travel days
Bidding for bases/type ratings
Incentive pay
Blended pay
Pension contributions
...and of course our pay but I have to say I do not consider this to be accurate:

This puts a CHC Global employee at a minimum of USD66,736 disadvantage to an equivalent European employee and a dramatic salary restructuring would be needed to bring parity to the salary equation.

Do not forget a national working from home pays his own tax.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 12:14
  #53 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Oz
Posts: 27
Sorry if I’ve hurt anybody’s feeling.

I agree with most of the above. The points are in line with most of the guys I work with the exception that salary seems to be #1.

The tax thing... Well I believe it should left out.

Most of the Euro boys do pay full tax but on the flip side they are home and that's worth something. I would also say that most of GO pilots also pay taxes. For example, here in Australia, since July 1st 2009 there is no more tax credit\exemption on foreign income. Yes full tax for us. Ditto for any GO Yanks. Canadian have a tax break of some sort but my Canucks co-worker keep hearing rumors of it being shelved in the near future. Anyway since non Canadians are now a majority at GO it is fair to assume that most GO pilots pay full tax.

I think that MAiG comparo, even if not perfect, is very realistic.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 14:24
  #54 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: A man of the world
Posts: 128
I am not sure about the tax thing being easy to drop. I wait to be corrected on this but since we work six months in foreign countries, I thought we were liable for taxes there and that was picked up by the company. If that is the case you would be in for a healthy tax credit at home surely. But I may be wrong...
And I am not sure how that ties in with the OETC for Canadians either.
That clarification would certainly determine whether the pay comparisons MAIG copied here are truly relevant or not.

What interests me is the appeal process and the knock on effects to settlements that are finally reached in collective agreement. From what I have read the CIRB were confident we had legitimate cause and agreed the formation of a union. With CHC appealing and when they are found to lose that appeal, is it fair to say that any agreements should be back dated to the commencement of the union; otherwise the company can gain huge offsets against its' lawyer bills just by delaying new terms with the pilots through the appeal process.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 15:13
  #55 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Victoria Canada
Age: 69
Posts: 83
oetc

1. Taxes and tax credits are between the taxpayer and the Government. For years CHC has unfairly used this credit as an excuse to hold wages down.

2. Citizens of other countries have their own tax advantages. Americans can write off their mortgages. Australians can claim non resident status much easier than Canadians.

3. Most employees of CHC GO are not Canadians now.

4. The OETC only covers the first 80'000 of income. After that we are taxed at the top rate.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 15:58
  #56 (permalink)  
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 26
Other Considerations

We have heard many issues from our members that will need to be addressed in upcoming negotiations other than those mentioned by the above posts (all good issues, by the way!). These include but are not limited to the following:
  1. Business travel vs Economy (certainly on flights of over 8 hours duration)
  2. Incentive pay at least on par with Canadian government employees (see below for website)
  3. Protection of employees from unfair dismissal or unfair labour practices
  4. A method of resolving disputes or grievances with management (none exists right now)
  5. Representation at committees where legislation or safety issues are of concern (ie. HAC, ICAO, IFALPA etc.)
Gov't of Canada per diem payments
Travel Directive, Appendix D - Allowances - Module 4 - Effective July 1, 2009 - Part 9 of 10

These are but a few of the outstanding issues that have never been addressed by CHC GO. They are not all remuneration issues. As professionals, these and many other issues need to be addressed.
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Old 23rd Jul 2009, 18:06
  #57 (permalink)  
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: canada
Posts: 26
Even More Considerations

  1. Over 90% of all pilots are at the top level (14). Nearly no one is below Level 9. The pay structure needs to be overhauled to better reflect the current hiring trends and to better acknowledge seniority
  2. A clearer definition of what protections exist for those pilots (essentially all of us) flying in foreign countries with a foreign validation. If something bad should happen (God forbid), we need to know what resources CHC will commit to get us out of trouble. Many of us know that we will be held personally liable for any accident(s) that might occur while flying abroad
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Old 24th Jul 2009, 03:25
  #58 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Oz
Posts: 27
NA...
You are right in saying GO pays taxes incurred while working in another country however you are responsible to pay all taxes in your country of residence. The amount paid by GO will not affect, or little, taxes actually paid in most country of residence.

To top it off, taxes paid by GO on your behalf shows up on your income as a taxable benefit.

Delam..
Oz lost their non resident status option as of last month (July 1st). You'll see many Aussies looking for a job at home as the take home pay will now be the same or better here.
Yanks with deductible mortgages only benefit them if they actually have a mortgage. The downside is that the capital gain achieve with the sale of a house is taxable as oppose to Canada which is not.

As we can see taxes are so convoluted from country to country that we will never be able to bring it down to a common denominator.

As Delam said " Taxes and tax credits (if any) are between the taxpayer and the Government"

Therefore (personal opinion of course) tax should be left out of the debate all together.
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Old 24th Jul 2009, 11:32
  #59 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Ban Don Ling
Posts: 244
Plakstift,

Exactly - tax should not be included in the equation - neither by the employer stating that you are paid less in comparison 'because you are tax-free'!
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Old 24th Jul 2009, 21:47
  #60 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: A man of the world
Posts: 128
Interesting - clearly I should talk to an account to fully understand the tax situation. Afterall, if CHC pay our taxes in country and bi-lateral tax agreements exist between home and that country, tax should not be taken twice. I suspect the situation is highly dependant on both where you work and where you live and will prove a minefield at negotiation time.

Business class travel - very nice. Just travelling on a ticket that the company does not find on the floor of a bird cage would be nice so I could use some of those upgrade vouchers once in a while...
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