OOOPS! I Created a “Foreign” Trust

My earlier blog post set out the tax problems that arise when one has created a "foreign" trust with US beneficiaries.  This post will probe the factors used to determine whether a trust is a US trust or a “foreign” trust. It will also point out a possible pitfall for many families who have members … Continue reading OOOPS! I Created a “Foreign” Trust

It’s About Time! Clearer Tax Guidance for Cryptocurrency…. on the Way

Internal Revenue Service (IRS) commissioner Charles Rettig announced that the IRS plans to issue further guidance on the taxation of cryptocurrency.   Commissioner Retting wrote that “We have been considering these issues and intend to publish guidance addressing these and other issues soon.” Can it be? Is an "IRS rescue" really on the way? Will it … Continue reading It’s About Time! Clearer Tax Guidance for Cryptocurrency…. on the Way

A No-Go — Foreign Trust with A US Beneficiary

Often, persons living abroad are asked to help care for an elderly parent who lives in the USA.  Similar situations can arise for other family members, some of whom may be US citizens living outside of America, but who need assistance due to age or health-related issues. Quite often the care required is simply a … Continue reading A No-Go — Foreign Trust with A US Beneficiary

Outrunning (and Outwitting) the IRS Using the Statute of Limitations

With tax returns either filed, in progress for Americans abroad, put on extension... (or late because an extension was not properly filed), now is a good time to look at the various statutes of limitations (SOL) applicable to US tax matters. What is a tax SOL?  Simply, the SOL prescribes the length of time permitted … Continue reading Outrunning (and Outwitting) the IRS Using the Statute of Limitations

Should A Green Card Holder Use the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion?

This is actually a difficult question to answer, despite the fact that many green card holders give little thought to the issue and willy-nilly claim the exclusion.  Let's look at some background.  Americans working abroad may be eligible to exclude from US taxable income certain foreign earned income (wages, compensation for services) under the rules … Continue reading Should A Green Card Holder Use the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion?

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……

What is a “Bona Fide Resident” for FEIE?

The case of Hudson v. Commissioner, T.C. Memo. 2017-221 provides a valuable lesson from the US Tax Court on what it means to be a "bona fide resident" for purposes of the Section 911 foreign earned income exclusion (“FEIE”).  The court in Hudson held that a pilot working for Korean Air and living in a … Continue reading What is a “Bona Fide Resident” for FEIE?

Head’s Up! IRS Just Revised EIN Application Procedure & Foreign Taxpayers Will Struggle

Effective as of May 13, taxpayers can no longer request an employer identification number (EIN) unless the "responsible party" named on the application has either a Social Security Number (SSN) or Individual Taxpayer Identification Number  (ITIN). Only governmental entities and the military are exempt from this requirement, and may continue to list non-individual entities as … Continue reading Head’s Up! IRS Just Revised EIN Application Procedure & Foreign Taxpayers Will Struggle

Foreign Earned Income Exclusion: What is “Earned Income”?

Americans working abroad may be eligible to exclude certain foreign earned income (wages, compensation for services) from US taxable income under the rules governing the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (FEIE).  The FEIE amount is adjusted annually for inflation. The amount for 2018 is US$104,100 per individual; for 2019 the amount is US$105,900 per individual.  In … Continue reading Foreign Earned Income Exclusion: What is “Earned Income”?

Americans Abroad: Separate But (Not) Equal

I will be posting here a series of eight related videos which discuss the premise that the United States is imposing a separate and more punitive tax system on U.S. dual citizens who live in (and are tax residents of) other countries. The videos were motivated by recent posts by Toronto lawyer John Richardson and … Continue reading Americans Abroad: Separate But (Not) Equal