I may have the opportunity to work on a project in Vietnam starting in early 2020, and am hoping to get some advice on how I should negotiate my compensation package with regard to taxes. I am a US citizen and a resident of the state of Texas, which has no personal income tax.

I've already negotiated a rate of US$105 per hour, but have not yet discussed expenses. I think it may be worthwhile to take a lower rate with higher allowable expenses (per Diem and housing) to reduce taxable income.

I have my own LLC in Texas and will be a 1099 to a consulting company based in California. All work will be done in Texas (remotely) or in Vietnam (onsite). I'm sure I will be in Vietnam for more than 183 days in the calendar year, so will be considered a resident.

I understand that Vietnam and the US have a dual taxation treaty, but am not sure exactly how that works. Does that mean I don't have to pay any tax to Vietnam because I'll be paying to the IRS?

My second question is: is it as simple as maximizing my per Diem and housing expense rates (to the maximum allowable)? A quick search tells me up to $356 per day is allowable, which leads me to believe I should be negotiating my expense rate aggressively, even accepting a much lower hourly rate.

Am I missing something?


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