Taxpayer’s FBAR WIN: “Willful” Penalty over $9.8 Million for Mere Signature Authority — Removed Entirely

Today’s post involving the case of Jonathan Zuhovitzky presents some important takeaways:  The IRS can get very aggressive when it comes to assessing “willful” FBAR penalties. We see this trend is on the rise. A diligent representative, however, can get the IRS to settle an FBAR matter that is favorable to the taxpayer.  It takes … Continue reading Taxpayer’s FBAR WIN: “Willful” Penalty over $9.8 Million for Mere Signature Authority — Removed Entirely

What does Senator Warren’s Proposed Wealth Tax Mean for You?

The ‘‘Ultra-Millionaire Tax Act of 2021’’ (the “Act”) was proposed by Democratic Senators Elizabeth Warren and Bernie Sanders on March 1, 2021.  Like all other tax proposals I have seen in my over 35+ years of tax practice, once the bee is in the bonnet, legislation will inevitably, inexorably, eventually blossom and flourish.  The Act … Continue reading What does Senator Warren’s Proposed Wealth Tax Mean for You?

Warning: Marriage to a ‘Foreigner’ May Be Hazardous to Your Tax Health

Recently, I am seeing more and more married couples of dual nationality (with one US individual partner) struggling with the US tax issues wrought by such a "mixed marriage".  Some are same sex couples married under the laws of a foreign (non-US) jurisdiction.   Believe it or not, marriages taking place in a foreign country (whether … Continue reading Warning: Marriage to a ‘Foreigner’ May Be Hazardous to Your Tax Health

Check-the-Box Election: Is it Really that Simple?

A very important building block when establishing a business is selecting the best type of entity from both a legal and tax perspective. This “choice of entity classification” can make a huge difference in liability protection and tax outcome. When an international business is involved, it should come as no surprise that the complexities only … Continue reading Check-the-Box Election: Is it Really that Simple?

Tax Filing and the Foreign Spouse – “Married Filing Separately” versus “Head of Household”

Tax filing time is upon us! Selecting the best tax filing status is an important element of tax planning and should not be taken lightly.  For US persons who are married to foreigners (so-called "nonresident alien individuals", or "NRA"), special considerations come into play.  Making the decision how to treat your foreign spouse for US … Continue reading Tax Filing and the Foreign Spouse – “Married Filing Separately” versus “Head of Household”

ATTENTION! Married Filing Separately? $5 of Gross Income? Must File US Income Tax Return!

Yes, that did read US$5. Not $50. Not $500……This measly number will heavily impact Americans abroad who are married to non-US spouses.  In many instances, the US spouse will file separately and keep the non-US spouse completely out of the US tax picture.  This may not always be the best tax strategy but in some … Continue reading ATTENTION! Married Filing Separately? $5 of Gross Income? Must File US Income Tax Return!

Alimony – No Need for Tax Confusion Even if Paying a Nonresident Alien Individual

My readers know that broad US tax reform was enacted in December 2017 pursuant to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”).  As of January 1, 2019, the TCJA’s new tax rules impacted any US spouse who was either paying or receiving alimony under a divorce or separation agreement executed after December 31, 2018. Under … Continue reading Alimony – No Need for Tax Confusion Even if Paying a Nonresident Alien Individual

D is for “Domicile”, Don’t Disregard!

Several of my recent blog posts set the stage showcasing the serious US tax issues that can arise for a married couple when only one  is a US person and they are impacted by application of a foreign country’s community property laws.  You can read these blog posts here, here and here. For example, if funding … Continue reading D is for “Domicile”, Don’t Disregard!

Life Gets Complicated When a Foreign Country’s Laws Impact US Tax

Transactions now span the globe with the tap of a key on an I-Phone; families are multi-national, with many living in different parts of the world at different stages in their careers and lives; virtual currency has become official legal tender in at least one country, the United States has de facto imposed enforcement of … Continue reading Life Gets Complicated When a Foreign Country’s Laws Impact US Tax

Getting an ITIN When Overseas: Help!

Today's post looks at the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS) options available to taxpayers residing abroad who need an “Individual Taxpayer Identification Number” (ITIN) to fulfill their US tax filing duties.  There are 3 basic options (i) mailing the completed Form W-7, “Application for Individual Taxpayer Identification”, and required identification documents to the IRS (ii) … Continue reading Getting an ITIN When Overseas: Help!