If spouses only have joint foreign accounts then, they can file one FBAR. However, if both spouses have at least one individual foreign account then they have to file one FBAR per person.

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A solution for this could be to check the date you bought the stock and then find the price of the stock on that day.

You subtract the amount of money spent on the investment from the amount you got when you sold the stock. The difference is your capital gain.

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If you have never filed a tax return and are a US expat living abroad for more than 3 years, there is a solution for you.

You can catch up on your US taxes as an American abroad by utilizing the IRS Tax Amnesty Program. This means you can avoid late filing penalties! It is a safe and legal way to get back on track if you’ve never filed a tax return.

However, it’s understandable if you are hesitant or nervous to start this filing process because it means you have to be open about being a US citizen abroad and never filing a tax return.

Fear not though, as this US Expat Tax Amnesty program is made especially for you and will reduce any late filing fees if applicable!

Find out more about the Streamlined procedure.

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Short answer - it depends.

There are three main factors that determine whether you owe state taxes as an expat:

  • The legitimacy of your domicile (legal residence) abroad (meaning, your place abroad should be legit and believable for the IRS)

  • If you maintain or have an abode (permanent residence) in your former state

  • If you are still making income in your state and thus owe state taxes as an expat

For a more detailed explanation check out our blog post - Filing State Taxes for Expats.

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Many self-employed individuals are actually common-law employees, who operate as regular employees, just on different contract terms.

According to the IRS, under common-law rules, if the company you work for can control what will be done and how it will be done, then you may actually be considered an employee.

This is true even when you get the freedom of action. What matters is that the company has the right to control the details of how the services are performed.

It may be beneficial to report your self-employment income as a common-law employee for various reasons, such as reducing self-employment tax and/or increasing refundable child tax credits.

More from the IRS about Independent Contractor vs Self-Employed persons.

How do I report my self-employment income as common-law employee income?

To report your self-employment income as common-law employee salaried income:

1) Delete your self-employment income entry

2) Select "Foreign Employment Compensation" on the Foreign and Other Income Section

3) Enter your self-employment income as salaried income on the "Foreign Employment Compensation" section when it pops up.

Keep in mind: You need to report your gross income and cannot deduct any business expenses.

Attention! If you receive a 1099-MISC or 1099-NEC, filing as a common-law employee may trigger the IRS to audit you and your employer. Instead, you should talk to your employer to determine if you should be getting a W-2 instead of 1099-MISC/1099-NEC. If your employer disagrees and you are confident you should be classified as a common-law employee, then:

  1. File Form SS-8 https://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/fss8.pdf with the IRS directly
  2. Request that Form 8919 be included in your Federal Tax Return at the Feedback Section to withhold your 1/2 of Social Security Taxes (you will need to be in the Professional Tier)

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The Foreign Tax Credit or Form 1116 is often used in countries with a higher tax rate than Uncle Sam. It is a dollar-for-dollar reduction towards your foreign earned income. You may learn more on this link from our website.

Please see the steps on how you can fill out Form 1116 (Foreign Tax Credit) using the software:

Firstly, you’ll need to log in to your account. If you are on our website, you’ll just need to select the “Get Started” button; please see below:

myexpattaxes software

Then select “Sign In” there are two buttons to sign in you can choose any of them/you may also use this link to log in https://app.myexpattaxes.com/login:

inside myexpattaxes software

Once signed in, select the “Select Income(s)” section in the navigation left of the page:

myexpattaxes select income form 1116

myexpattaxes income form 1116

Once you enter your income, you’ll be asked if it has been taxed outside the US, and you may select “Yes” to enter the amount of foreign taxes withheld from your income.

myexpattaxes income subject to taxes outside the US form 1116

After entering all your income, the software would direct you to the summary of all your income:

myexpattaxes taxes paid

myexpattaxes double taxation check

You can always reach out to our Support team at team@myexpattaxes.com if you need any help while filling the questions, or you can request a chat on our website for real-time assistance; we are open during business days.

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You can use two ways to reach out to us via Live chat or send us an email:

If you need help in real time, you can reach us thru our Live chat, you’ll just need to select the chat icon on the lower part of the navigation panel.

chat button myexpattaxes

You’ll be asked for your name and email address (that you used to sign up with us MyExpatTaxes) to proceed with the chat, and one of our Support Team will be assigned to you to help you in case you get stuck.

stuck during filing process contact

You may send us an email at team@myexpattaxes.com; another way is by selecting the “Get in Touch Button” from our website and our support team; we’ll get back to you within 24 hours if it’s on weekdays. Our Live chat is available on our website about 12-14 hours per business day so we can cover all the time zones.

Lastly, we’ll send you a link to schedule a call to one of Tax Professional. You’ll just need to select the available time from the link and we’ll reach out to you before the scheduled time to confirm the time.

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For customers with standard tax cases, their return can take anywhere between 15-30 minutes. With the option to save and go back, those with more complex cases or filing for multiple years can take their time without feeling rushed.

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An IRS Form is commonly used to collect information from freelancers, independent workers, or workers who aren’t employed in a company but have completed work. If you earn more than $600, you must submit a W-9 Form.

Also, when you open a financial account overseas, the financial institution might be required to ask you for your US Social Security Number because of FATCA - and so, you should complete a Form W9 to provide them with your taxpayer ID.

Here’s a sample copy of Form W-9:

w-9 form myexpattaxes
IRS.gov

How to complete a W-9 Form?

  1. Request a copy of the W-9 Form from your employer; you can also obtain a copy of the W-9 Form directly from the IRS website.
  2. You must enter your legal name, which should be the same name shown on your tax return or SS card. If you have requested an ITIN, it should be the name from your W-7 that needs to be entered. If you don’t have a business name then you can just skip the Line 2.
  3. Enter the legal structure of your business for Line 3, so the IRS knows where to classify your info for tax purposes.
  4. You’ll also need to input your mailing address for IRS correspondence.
  5. For Part I, you’ll be ask to enter either your Employer Identification Number (EIN) or Social Security Number (SSN). This would depends on the structure of your business
  6. The certification area or the Part II of the form is where you can sign and date the form making sure that the information that you have provided are all accurate. If you have a backup withholding for failing to to report all interest and dividends on your tax return, you’ll need to cross out Item 2.

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If you are a US citizen, you need to report your worldwide income if you meet the IRS tax filing threshold. Why? The US is one of the two countries that have citizenship-based taxation; the other one is Eritrea.

With MyExpatTaxes, you’ll be guided by our software to select the types of income that need to be reported. It is classified as US source and Foreign source income:

us standard tax documents myexpattaxes

Source Income would be input under the “US Standard Tax Documents” section, which looks like this:

us standard tax documents feature myexpattaxes

You’ll need to select which forms did you receive to input your US source income:

us source income types of income myexpattaxes

Foreign Source Income is on the tax return section on the navigation panel. You'll need to choose “Select Income” as such:

select types of income feature myexpattaxes

types of income for tax year myexpattaxes

Once you have input your income our software will automatically calculate the most beneficial expat tax benefit that you could use based on your tax situation. If these throw a red flag, a tax professional will review it further.

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Don't worry! You need to take very easy steps to start filing with us.

Firstly, create an account (for free) then fill out your information. You can also save your progress and come back anytime. If you are on our website, you’ll just need to select the “Get Started” button; please see below:

Then select “Sign In” there are two buttons to sign in you can choose any of them/you may also use this link to log in:

After signing in to your account, you go through our questionnaire. That will guide you through the process based on the answers you give.

Once you paid the fee, your draft tax return(s) will be generated and you'll be able to access it through the app within a few minutes.

You can then provide feedback on them directly on the app and either reject the drafts or proceed to authorize us to finalize your return.

Lastly, confirm the results and calculations. Our expert tax team will e-file your tax returns with the IRS and you will be notified along the way.

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We can help you with that. Our intuitive expat tax software allows you to report financial assets simply and smoothly. Financial assets you can report include: Cash, bank account deposits, stocks, bonds, mutual funds and any other non-US financial accounts.

How to enter it through our app?

Once you go through our question, you’ll reach a section labeled as FBAR and FATCA:

fbar and fatca myexpattaxes

Step 1: Confirm if you have any non-US financial accounts:

foreign bank account report myexpattaxes

Step 2: Confirm if you want to file with us. Please note it’s already included in the fee.

Step 3: Add all your account details:

If you have anymore questions, feel free to contact our tax team! They are standing by to assist.

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Our most popular US expat tax software includes all the forms you need to become tax compliant. Here are the most common forms we have in our software:

FORM PURPOSE
Form 1040 U.S. Individual Income Tax Return
Form 1040 Schedule 1 Additional Income and Adjustments to Income
Form 1040 Schedule 2 Additional Taxes (alternative minimum tax, household employment expenses, etc)
Form 1040 Schedule 3 Additional Credits and Payments
Form 1040 Schedule 4 Other Taxes (self-employment, unreported Social Security, etc)
Form 1040 Schedule 5 Section 4081(e) Claims
Form 1040 Schedule 6 Other Claims (which cannot be reported on Schedule 1, 2, 3, 5, and 8)
Form 1040 Schedule A Itemized Deductions
Form 1040 Schedule B Interest and Ordinary Dividends
Form 1040 Schedule C Profit or Loss From Business
Form 1040 Schedule D Capital Gains and Losses
Form 1040 Schedule E Supplemental Income and Lo
Form 1040 Schedule SE Self-Employment Tax
Form 1040X Amended U.S. Individual Income Tax Return
Form 1116 Foreign Tax Credit & Foreign Branch Income, General, Passive & Resourced Income
Form 2210 Underpayment of Estimated Tax by Individuals, Estates, and Trusts
Form 2441 Child and Dependent Care Expenses
Form 2555 Foreign Earned Income
Form 4562 Depreciation and Amortization (Including Information on Listed Property)
Form 4868 Application for Automatic Extension of Time to File U.S. Individual Income Tax Return
Form 5329 Additional Taxes on Qualified Plans (including IRAs) and Other Tax-Favored Accounts
Form 5405 Repayment of the First-Time Homebuyer Credit
Form 6251 Alternative Minimum Tax - Individuals
Form 8582 Passive Activity Loss Limitations
Form 8606 Nondeductible IRAs
Form 8812 Additional Child Tax Credit
Form 8814 Parent's Election to Report Child's Interest and Dividends
Form 8829 Expenses for Business Use of Your Home
Form 8832 Entity Classification Election
Form 8833 Treaty-Based Return Position Disclosure Under Section 6114 or 7701(b)
Form 8863 Education Credits (American Opportunity and Lifetime Learning Credits)
Form 8867 Paid Preparer's Due Diligence Checklist
Form 8889 Health Savings Accounts (HSAs)
Form 8915-E Qualified 2020 Disaster Retirement Plan Distributions and Repayments
Form 8938 Statement of Specified Foreign Financial Assets
Form 8949 Sales and other Dispositions of Capital Assets
Form 8960 Net Investment Income Tax Individuals, Estates, and Trusts

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You may wonder if you need to pay US taxes as an expat because you typically need to file a US tax return. The truth is - it’s a fact that living abroad as a US citizen or Green Card Holder does not mean you can avoid US taxation. Depending on where you live in the world, you may be double-taxed – an occurrence where taxes are placed on your income from both the US and the host country.

But don’t worry just yet – the US was aware of this double-taxation situation, so they made a variety of tax exclusions, deductions and agreements with several countries around the world to prevent this:

  • Foreign Earned Income Exclusion: Also known as the FEIE, expats can exclude a little over $100,000 of foreign earned income off their US tax return. We recommend utilizing this exclusion if you pay low to no income tax in your host country, and do not have or plan to have children (dependents) who would register for a Social Security Number.
  • Foreign Tax Credit: You could re-use every euro, pound, yen from paying income taxes as in another country as credits against your US tax liability. Expats should use this form if they for example pay more income tax in their host country, and earn more than the FEIE rate.
  • Foreign Housing Credit: Certain housing expenses from your home abroad can be deducted off a US tax return. There is through a limit to how much you can deduct, but using this credit can help if your foreign earned income surpasses the FEIE threshold.
  • Tax-Treaty Benefits: The US made agreements with several countries around the world to help prevent double taxation for Americans abroad. Expats can utilize tax treaty benefits when filing their US tax return to exclude having to pay US Social Security and Medicare taxes.

To learn more about whether you need to pay US taxes as an expat, please visit our expat tax guide.

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MyExpatTaxes is a tax software that helps you file your US taxes, no matter where you live. Getting started takes less than 5 minutes. To make the process faster, ensure you have the required documents needed to file your return.

Set Up your Account

  1. Create an Account. Create an account in under 3 minutes! Answer simple questions about yourself.
  2. Activate your account. A link will be sent to your inbox to activate your account. Make sure to check your spam!
  3. Start answering simple questions. Our intuitive software adapts to the answers you give, which saves you time. 

Documents to get Started | Required for all taxpayers:

Your foreign version of a W-2 (a document from your employer that provides you with an overview of your total salary and taxes paid)

Documents to get Started | Other common documents taxpayers need:

Did you? Documents you might need:
Sell stocks, get dividends, earn interest income 1099 or foreign equivalent
Pay off student loans 1098-E
Pay off a mortgage 1098
Move recently Receipts for moving related expenses
Donate to charity Receipts for charitable donations
Pay un-reimbursed medical, dental or business expenses Receipts for relevant expenses

You can always save your progress & return to your account if you don’t have all the information handy. So no worries!

Get Started!

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At MyExpatTaxes, with the Rewards Program, we offer two ways to save on filing. We thank all our customers for their loyalty!

Gaining Credits From Being A Returning Customer

Each year that a customer returns to MyExpatTaxes, they will receive 25 credits added to their account starting in 2021.

Therefore, if you filed your US expat taxes with MyExpatTaxes in 2021, you will receive 25 credits added to your account in 2022.

Sending Referral Links

Another way you can save with MyExpatTaxes is by sending referral links. After you make your purchase with MyExpatTaxes, you will receive a referral link that you can send to your friends.

What is the discount I will get?

When you send a referral link to a new customer with MyExpatTaxes, they will receive 20% off their purchase with us, and you will get 20 credits added to your account.

Make sure your credit is tracked.

Make sure your credit is tracked by ensuring that your friend uses this link when making their account. The referral information will be stored at the introduction step.

What are Credits?

1 credit = 1 unit of currency you choose to make your payment in.
Currently, MyExpatTaxes offers EUR and USD. Therefore, 1 credit = 1 USD or 1 EUR.

Learn more about the MyExpatTaxes Rewards Program.

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If you opt for a professional review, then our tax review team would start looking into your case as soon as possible. We might need more information and, if so, will reach out to you. If all is well, we'll upload your final tax return to the site. We average around 3-5 business days per review; so it may take a bit longer, though, depending on your tax situation's complexity.

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Great question! Unfortunately our answer won’t be as great… it all boils down to the US tax law:

“If you are a U.S. citizen or resident alien, the rules for filing income, estate, and gift tax returns and paying estimated tax are generally the same whether you are in the United States or abroad. Your worldwide income is subject to U.S. income tax, regardless of where you reside.” 

IRS

This is also true if you're an Accidental American - someone who has US citizenship and filing obligations without knowing. Therefore if you make over the tax filing threshold, the IRS needs you to file an annual tax return, no matter where you live in the world. Read our expat guide to see what this year's filing requirements are.

Don’t fear, MyExpatTaxes has your back. We’ll help you file your US tax return while saving you time and money!

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Foreign earned income is income from services performed abroad that you actively worked for (i.e. as an employee, self-employed). Foreign investment income does not count!

Learn more about foreign sourced income.

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