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!

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

NEWS FLASH! 2019 Tax Returns: Get Ready for Questions About Your Virtual Currency Holdings

It’s no secret, the IRS is very serious with its crackdown on virtual currency. In July, the agency started sending letters to taxpayers who may not have been in compliance with regard to their use of virtual currency.  Things are heating up and there’s more to come. The early release draft of the IRS Form … Continue reading NEWS FLASH! 2019 Tax Returns: Get Ready for Questions About Your Virtual Currency Holdings

Is the IRS Trying to Find You?

Moving is always a stressful event and it is easy for certain things to be overlooked. One item on your moving checklist that is critical to remember: properly notifying the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) of your change of address.  Today's post tells you how to do it right and the terrible things that can happen … Continue reading Is the IRS Trying to Find You?

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!

Have you Expatriated or Thinking of Expatriating? IRS Now Looking Closely

On July 19th, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) through its Large Business and International (LB&I) Division announced six new “compliance campaigns” for taxpayers. Significantly, one of these campaigns targets “expatriation”, and apparently reaches back to those who “expatriated” on or after June 17, 2008.  The campaign will be looking at “expatriates” – US citizens who … Continue reading Have you Expatriated or Thinking of Expatriating? IRS Now Looking Closely

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

US Immigrant’s Residency Starting Date – The Devil’s Details – Too Many Days in the USA?

Part I of this blog post examined the importance of the Residency Starting Date (RSD) and how it applied under the Green Card Test. It also pointed out that traps for the unwary can destroy pre-immigration tax planning if one had not correctly nailed down the RSD.  Today's post will examine the RSD rules that apply when … Continue reading US Immigrant’s Residency Starting Date – The Devil’s Details – Too Many Days in the USA?

US Tax Filings by US Grantor of Foreign Trust

Today's post is a continuation of a series of blog posts dealing with foreign trusts A general overview of the US tax issues surrounding foreign trusts can be found here. When a US person is involved in any way with a foreign trust extra caution is required.  Strict US tax filing responsibilities come into play … Continue reading US Tax Filings by US Grantor of Foreign Trust

Foreign Life Insurance Policy?  Houston, We Have a Problem……

Recently, I blogged about the fact that many US persons living abroad have “foreign” (non-US) life, sickness or accident insurance or a foreign annuity.  A mere handful have any knowledge of the complex US tax rules that may apply to these policies. Buzz words include “passive foreign investment company” (PFIC) exposure, Form 114 Bank Secrecy … Continue reading Foreign Life Insurance Policy?  Houston, We Have a Problem……