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Archive for Expatriate

U.S. Expat Tax Saving Strategies

U.S. expats are required to file a U.S. federal tax return reporting their worldwide income, wherever in the world they live. Expats have to comply with the tax laws in the country where they live too, leaving them exposed to the risk of double taxation, having to pay tax to two countries on the same income. Many Americans living abroad aren’t in fact 100% sure which country they should be paying tax to on what income. Read more

FBAR Reporting For U.S. Expats With A Foreign Business

FBARs (Foreign Bank Account Reports) have been a filing requirement for Americans with financial accounts overseas that meet the criteria since the Bank Secrecy Act of 1970. It has only been enforced for the last few years however, since the 2010 Foreign Account tax Compliance Act (FATCA) obliged foreign financial institutions to pass details about their American account holders to the IRS. Currently around 300,000 foreign banks and other financial firms are doing this. Read more

Expats: Buying Or Selling Real Estate Abroad

All Americans are required to file U.S. taxes and report their worldwide income, wherever in the world they live. Thankfully there are a number of IRS exemptions that can be claimed to reduce or eliminate U.S. tax liability for expats, however even if no U.S. tax is owed, expats still have to file an annual federal return.

There are thought to be around 9 million Americans living overseas, many of whom, particularly those who have moved abroad permanently, consider purchasing foreign real estate. Read more

U.S. Expat Mistakes : Part III

The same vein runs through most expat conversations. U.S. taxes are burdensome and compliance is difficult. Keeping up with the rules and regulations takes up a big chunk of the expats’ time.

Many financial institutions in countries which have Inter-Governmental Agreements {IGAs} with the U.S. find keeping up with U.S. Bank Secrecy Act reporting requirements so cumbersome that they  do not want U.S. citizens to be their patrons.  Read more

Understanding U.S. Federal Taxes For American Expats

The USA is almost unique in taxing U.S. citizens even when they live abroad. This means that expats who earn over $10,000 ($10,300 for 2016, to be precise, or just $400 of self-employment income) are required to file a U.S. federal tax return, regardless of where their income originates, or whether they are also paying taxes elsewhere.

While expats still have to pay any U.S. tax they may owe by April 15th, they have until June 15th to file, with a further extension available on request to October 15th. Read more

Taxes For Expats Renting Property In The U.S.

Many Americans own property in the U.S. when they move abroad, and so are faced with the question of whether to sell or rent it.

How to answer this question often depends on whether they are moving abroad temporarily or permanently: if they are moving overseas temporarily, if may make more sense to rent it, while if they are moving abroad permanently, they may prefer to sell up and use the proceeds to buy a home abroad. Read more

U.S. Expats In The UK And Brexit

In a referendum in June 2016, the UK voted to leave the European Union (EU). The result was a surprise to many, as experts had been lining up to say that the UK would be worse off economically if it left. Just over a year on, it’s still a divisive issue in the UK. However the government formally triggered the start of the two year leaving process in March 2017, so it’s definitely going to happen. While heated debate on the pros and cons of staying and leaving still rages among the Brits, many U.S. expats are wondering what the implications for them are. Read more

U.S. Expat Mistakes: Part II

I have been on many online forums, message boards, and groups for U.S. citizen expats over the past few years. Most posts you see are ones with frantic U.S. citizens overwhelmed with U.S. tax rules & regulations they have to keep up with. This, in addition to keeping up with their resident country’s tax laws, must drive one crazy. These forums provide quick answers; no wonder they are so popular! Read more

Reasons Not To Worry If You’re Behind With Your Expat Filing

There are lots of scare stories going around about the possible consequences for not filing U.S. taxes as an expat. You may have heard for example about U.S. passports being revoked, sizable FBAR penalties, and banks closing expats’ accounts because of FATCA. So if you’re an expat who’s behind with their U.S. tax filing, you may well be at least a little bit concerned. Read more

FBAR Instructions For U.S. Expats Filing FinCEN Form 114

Hugo Lesser

Americans living abroad are still required to file a U.S. tax return, and furthermore they may have to report their foreign bank and investment accounts by filing a Foreign Bank Account Report, or FBAR.

Due to the 2010 Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA), most foreign banks and other financial firms are now reporting their American account holders account balance and contact details to the IRS. Read more

IRS Form 5472 – What Expats Need To Know

IRS form 5472 is a U.S. filing requirement that affects some Americans living abroad who own or part-own corporations.

Form 5472 must be filed by U.S.-registered corporations that are 25% or more owned by a foreigner, and foreign corporations that trade in the U.S., that make any ‘reportable transactions’ during the filing period. A ‘reportable transaction’ typically means that they have received or transferred any money or assets. Read more

The Tax Digi-Nomad Series – How To Set Up A Virtual Mail Box

This is Olivier Wagner writing about the life of a Tax Digi-Nomad. As a tax advisor who travels the world with my tax practice, one of the questions that often arise is how to receive mail as I travel from country to country with my tax practice. When I moved to Montreal, I opened a mailbox in Walnut, CA that scans mail for you. In most cases, I just receive the pdf and ask to destroy the original. It works like magic to have your mail scanned daily and emailed to you.

Read more

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