Q: Is it safe for me to file 2014 Taxes as A US NON-RESIDENT if my Green Card
(family based) has just been applied for in April 2015?
Question is simple; US residency & tax background has longer history.
I’m working with KPMG (employer provided tax consultants) to file a (i). 2013 US tax amendment & (ii). 2014 US tax return (I'm yet to file for 2014 & have an extension to file).
I was living outside the US from Oct 13 2013 – 12 Feb 2015. REASON: I ran out of H1B
status and was relocated to employer’s London, UK office.
I returned to USA in Feb 2015 on K-1 visa to marry my finance (a NATURALIZED US CITIZEN). And have filed FAMILY BASED I-485
Green Card & Employment Authorization I-765 on April 24 2015.
To help manage my tax situation & potentially avoid double taxation (since I’m also filing RESIDENT STATUS TAX RETURN IN UNITED KINGDOM on SAME employment income for 2013 and 2014), KPMG has recommended the following:
1. AMEND prior filed Full-Year Resident 2013 US tax return to A PART-YEAR RESIDENT return
2. FILE 2014 tax return as NON-RESIDENT
3. FILE 2015 tax return next year as PART-YEAR RESIDENT again
Essentially, I'm showing what tax experts call a "BREAK IN RESIDENCY" (for tax purpose).
The above is consistent with my real residency status in USA over 2013-15. However, the only doubt we have is IF IT IS100% SAFE TO DO SO, IF SIMULTANEOUSLY, I FILED FOR FAMILY BASED GREEN CARD and the same is under processing. Does filing/amending taxes this way RAISE ANY DOUBT REGARDING MY IMMIGRATION
INTENT OR JEOPARDIZE MY PERMANENT RESIDENCY PROCESS IN ANY WAY?
More specifically, the Question I have is as follows (3 parts) :-
(A). Can I file my 2013 and 2014 tax returns as US part-year and Non-Resident, respectively, given my family based Green Card (I-485) was just applied for on Apr 24 2015?
(B). As USCIS processes my Green Card application this year, will it make any difference if:
- i). I have over the same period, chosen to amend my 2013 return from Full-Year to Part-Year resident?
-- AND --
- ii). Chose to file 2014 tax return as US Non-Resident?
- iii). Does doing so (i.e. filing returns as part- year/non-resident) create any CONFLICT OF INTEREST/INTENT in my said intent to immigrate?
As you will understand, the UNDERLYING CONCERN is to NOT do anything that will jeopardize the status of my Green Card Application.
I though it should be safe to file as part-year or non-resident because:
a). I was forced to leave USA in 2013 due to H1-B status expiring (I had no options to extend USA stay)
b). As of Oct 2013, my plans to return to USA in 2015 were not firm. I did not now 100% for sure that I may be returning in 2015 to marry & settle down (I was not engaged to my husband in Oct 2013).
However, will be grateful if you can help me confirm 100% what the right action would be to ensure 100% safety in securing Green Card with no glitches or USCIS questioning.
[TIMELINE] - US VISA HISTORY
- (2005-2007) - Entered first in July 2005 on F1 (student visa) = MBA program at UPenn
- (2007 – Oct 2013) - H1-B visa: Oct (worked with same firm in New York). Always filed taxes as US Alien Resident.
- (Aug 2012): Employer filed for PERM on Aug 02, 2012
- (Feb 2014): Got engaged to a US Citizen living in Seattle (we were dating since May 2012)
- (April 2014): File 2013 US tax return online as Full-Year Resident (perhaps, shouldn’t have but I didn’t know any better!)
- (April 2014): Fiance filed for K-1 (fiancee visa)
- (Nov 2014): PERM was still in process as of Nov 2014. Process was withdrawn (as I now had plans to re-enter & immigrate based on impending marriage to my fiancée, a US citizen who is sponsoring me)
- (Dec 2014): K-1 Visa Granted
- (Feb 2015): Re-rentered USA after a ~16 months stay in UK. Got married same month in New Jersey and relocated to Seattle, where I'm now permanently based. Husband has lived and worked here >20 year.
Please let me know if there’s further information you need.