Artio Partners Informs Americans Expats Residing Abroad about Key Expat Tax Rules for the Upcoming Tax Season

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CPA firm Artio Partners wants to remind Americans living abroad to be informed on the American Tax Relief Act of 2012 prior to filing.

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Tax season 2013 has arrived. American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) that was signed into law on January 2, 2013 made permanent or extended a number of tax provisions that expired in 2012 and 2011. ZM Ishmurzina from Artio Partners provides an overview of key expatriate tax rules for Americans living abroad.

What are key deductions for US expats in a tax year 2012?

  • Foreign earned income exclusion. The maximum amount of exclusion is $95,100. Each spouse is eligible to claim up to $95,100 in foreign income exclusion if s/he has earned income.
  • Foreign Housing Exclusion. American expats who meet either bona fide residence test or physical presence test can deduct eligible housing expenses. The amount of housing exclusion has been increased in a tax year 2012 across several geographic locations.
  • Foreign tax credit. US expats can claim foreign tax credit for overseas taxes (foreign income tax) on a dollar-for-dollar basis on US expatriate tax returns.

What are the filing requirements for American expats in a tax year 2012?

  • American expats are required to file a US expatriate tax return if they meet filing requirements based upon a gross income, filing status and age. It is mandatory to file a US expat tax return to claim foreign income exclusion and other deductions.
  • Americans living abroad might be required to file a state return.
  • American expats are required to file the FBAR if the aggregate value of foreign financial assets exceeded $10,000 at any time during 2012.

What is a tax return filing date for Americans living abroad?

  • The official tax return due date is April 15, 2013. However, Americans living abroad get an automatic extension until June 15, 2013.
  • American expats must remember that they have to pay any tax due by April 15, 2013 because the interest will start to accumulate after April 15. Penalties will be assessed after June 15.

How early can Americans living abroad file a US tax return?

  • Due to the fact that Congress took considerable time to pass the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 the actual filing date is postponed this year. The IRS will officially start accepting tax returns electronically on January 30, 2013.

Delinquent Americans living abroad still have a chance to participate in the IRS streamlined program if they meet the requirements.

International tax experts at Artio Partners will help you file US expatriate tax returns and participate in the IRS streamlined program. We offer a transparent flat-fee package for American expats, dual citizens and foreign nationals with US interests. To learn more about our services, please visit Artio Partners.

About Artio Partners

Artio Partners provides US expat tax services to American expatriates living abroad and dual citizens from over 170 countries.

We specialize in US expatriate tax preparation, past due expat tax returns and complex international tax issues like FBAR, FATCA, foreign tax credit, foreign real estate, PFIC, foreign adoption and controlled foreign corporations.

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Z.M. Ishmurzina