Foreign Pension Plans / Retirement Trusts – Is IRS Seeing the Light?

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) - starting to see some light with respect to "foreign" pension plans?  The US tax issues surrounding foreign pensions and retirement schemes is extremely complex and has vexed tax professionals and US persons abroad for many years.  (Read my earlier blog post here).  Due to the diversity of such plans, … Continue reading Foreign Pension Plans / Retirement Trusts – Is IRS Seeing the Light?

IRS’ Crypto Guidance – No, You Cannot Rely On It.

Cyptocurrency (such as Bitcoin) is a type of virtual currency. This is an emerging area and consequently transactions involving use of crypto come with an enormous amount of US tax uncertainty. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has taken a keen interest in virtual currency since its use provides a way for taxpayers to avoid tax … Continue reading IRS’ Crypto Guidance – No, You Cannot Rely On It.

Oh No! I Have a “Foreign” Pension or Employee Savings Plan and Uncle Sam is Killing Me (Part II)

Part I of this blog post introduced the topic of the "foreign" pension or employee workplace savings plan, and examined in some detail how these plans are becoming more and more popular in the United Arab Emirates. The plans, however, give US expatriate employees some serious US tax headaches. Today's post focusses on these thorny … Continue reading Oh No! I Have a “Foreign” Pension or Employee Savings Plan and Uncle Sam is Killing Me (Part II)

FinCEN: No FBAR Reporting for Virtual Currency in an Offshore Account

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) will jointly examine application  of foreign account reporting requirements to virtual currency held in an offshore account under the Bank Secrecy Act (the notorious FBAR, Form 114).  Two important points about FBAR duties for foreign accounts holding virtual currency  were made in a … Continue reading FinCEN: No FBAR Reporting for Virtual Currency in an Offshore Account

Oh No! I Have a “Foreign” Pension or Employee Savings Plan and Uncle Sam is Killing Me (Part I)

“Foreign” pension or similar plans are a very common feature in the lives of US expats residing and working abroad. As used here, the word “pension” is only a general term. While pensions in the United States often refer to defined benefit retirement plans, my use in today’s blog post refers to a pension as … Continue reading Oh No! I Have a “Foreign” Pension or Employee Savings Plan and Uncle Sam is Killing Me (Part I)

Dangerous Liaisons: Foreign Assets and the US Nominee

We’ve known for some time that the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has been mining heaps of data provided to it by financial institutions that were the subject of non-prosecution agreements, as well as examining treasure troves of financial information from various leaks (think “Panama Papers”) looking not only for tax dollars, interest and penalties but … Continue reading Dangerous Liaisons: Foreign Assets and the US Nominee

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!

Did you Join OVDP? You’d Better Still be in Tax Compliance!

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has now expanded its compliance campaigns and included “post Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program compliance” on the list. On July 19th, the IRS through its Large Business and International (LB&I) Division announced six new “compliance campaigns” for taxpayers. Significantly, one of these campaigns targets taxpayers who had entered an Offshore Voluntary Disclosure Program (OVDP) … Continue reading Did you Join OVDP? You’d Better Still be in Tax Compliance!

IRS Hot on the Trail of Virtual Currency Owners: What IRS Letters to Taxpayers Really Mean

Just last week, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) reported that it has begun sending letters to taxpayers with virtual currency transactions. The targeted taxpayers are those that potentially failed to report income and pay tax from virtual currency transactions or those who failed to report their transactions properly. Virtual currency transactions involve complex tax issues … Continue reading IRS Hot on the Trail of Virtual Currency Owners: What IRS Letters to Taxpayers Really Mean

A Dangerous Game: Jail Time for Inherited Foreign Accounts

You may remember my earlier blog post detailing the unenviable case of the wealthy New York Seggerman family which had undisclosed offshore bank accounts inherited from their father. Instead of coming clean and revealing the existence of the accounts to the US Internal Revenue Service (IRS), four of the Seggerman siblings created even more secret … Continue reading A Dangerous Game: Jail Time for Inherited Foreign Accounts