The London mayor, who holds British and American passports, revealed in November he had been hit by a capital gains tax bill – despite previously lambasting the US embassy in London over its failure to pay the congestion charge.
According to the Financial Times, he has paid an undisclosed sum, with his spokesman saying “the matter has been dealt with”. Johnson, who was born in New York, has reportedly paid the outstanding bill ahead of a visit to Boston, New York and Washington in March.
The mayor is expected to return to parliament in May in the safe Conservative seat of Uxbridge and South Ruislip and is considered a frontrunner to be the next Conservative leader.
He has said in the past that he is prepared to relinquish his US citizenship but an unpaid tax bill would have been an obstacle.
The bill related to his first home in the UK, which was not subject to capital gains tax in England.
All US citizens, including those with dual citizenship, are obliged to file a tax return and liable to pay US taxes, wherever they are living, even if the income is earned abroad.
Asked in November if he would pay the bill, Johnson said: “No is the answer. I think it’s absolutely outrageous. Why should I?
“I think, you know, I’m not a … I, you know, I haven’t lived in the United States for, you know, well, since I was five years old … I pay the lion’s share of my tax, I pay my taxes to the full in the United Kingdom where I live and work.”
Asked why he continued to carry a US passport, to which he responded: “It’s very difficult to give up.”
Johnson has continually pressed the US embassy to pay unpaid fines it has incurred for the congestion charge. The embassy says its diplomats are immune.
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