How JustAnswer Works:

  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.

Ask Jon Andrews Your Own Question

Jon Andrews
Jon Andrews, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3118
Experience:  I deal with all levels of tax planning and controversy - from the ordinary to the complex.
Type Your Tax Question Here...
Jon Andrews is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Three others and I inherited an estate in a foreign country

Resolved Question:

My three siblings and I inherited an estate in a foreign country when my father passed away eight years ago. The country is a third world country so we assumed it wasn't worth much. We gave my mother's brother, who lives is that country (call him K) a power of attorney to collect the inheritance and transfer it to us. He told my mother there was a dispute with the government of the foreign country over who owned the inheritance. Being family I took his word for it. He claimed he was fighting the government so he could put the inheritance in our hands. Eventually I became suspicious of him, and demanded a detailed accounting and all documents for his work on this matter. He said he didn't have it, so in August 2009 I visited the foreign country for the first time to see for myself. from what I saw during my visit there is no evidence of any dispute with the government. K and his brothers have seemingly taken possession of the inheritance. He continued to refuse to provide the file and eventually I was threatened and told the relative intended to take my inheritance. I fled the country and came back to the United States. I have since hired an attorney in that country to get my inheritance from K. My attorney filed a demand letter with a court in that foreign country, demanding all documents related to the inheritance and an accounting of K's work (list of properties, documents of ownership, accounting of funds and so on). The attorney is to tell me exactly what I inherited and provide all documents of ownership. The problem is the other three beneficiaries refused to give my attorney permission to do this work for them, claiming they don't trust him. Their intention is to work with K to resolve the matter. My attorney states their permission is irrelevant (each beneficiary has a right to see the file under the laws of that foreign country). However, the relative is using the fact that only I retained this attorney, and my family's refusal to give this attorney permission, as a basis to keep the file out of my attorney's hands. My attorney says that his argument has no legal merit in the foreign country, but that there is nothing I can do. No one can go to K's house and demand the file. My only option is to sue him in the foreign country, which will take time. Based on my internet research and a rough approximation by my attorney, my inheritance is worth as much as $5-$10 million. This is far more than I ever expected, since again the country where it's located is a third world country.

So right now, I believe I inherited something of high value, but due to the above reasons I have no evidence. I have no deeds to the properties, no accounting of moneys inherited, no bank accounts and so on. Indeed if I went to that country right now I would have no document or evidence allowing me to take ownership of my inheritance. For example if I went to one of the properties and demanded possession, they could call the police on me and there's nothing I could show the police stating that the property is mine.

As you can imagine this has caused me many sleepless nights. One of my worries in this mess is the tax situation. Do I need to report anything at this time to the IRS? I am optimistic that my attorney will eventually get me my inheritance, and I will then sell it and move the money to the United States, and I want to make sure I do everything properly in preparation.

Signed, Poor in USA, possibly with large inheritance coming.

Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Jon Andrews replied 4 years ago.

There is not anything to do at this time from a tax standpoint. You do not have any control over any of the assets. At such time as some of this becomes resolved in your favor, there may be some reporting required. There should not be any actual tax owed to the IRS until a property is sold. If you are given control over money that is in a foreign bank account, you will need to report that but there is not any tax that is owed based on that.

 

jon

Jon Andrews, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3118
Experience: I deal with all levels of tax planning and controversy - from the ordinary to the complex.
Jon Andrews and 6 other Tax Specialists are ready to help you

JustAnswer in the News:

 
 
 
Ask-a-doc Web sites: If you've got a quick question, you can try to get an answer from sites that say they have various specialists on hand to give quick answers... Justanswer.com.
JustAnswer.com...has seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like justanswer.com/legal
...leave nothing to chance.
Traffic on JustAnswer rose 14 percent...and had nearly 400,000 page views in 30 days...inquiries related to stress, high blood pressure, drinking and heart pain jumped 33 percent.
Tory Johnson, GMA Workplace Contributor, discusses work-from-home jobs, such as JustAnswer in which verified Experts answer people’s questions.
I will tell you that...the things you have to go through to be an Expert are quite rigorous.
 
 
 

What Customers are Saying:

 
 
 
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
< Last | Next >
  • I really was impressed with the prompt response. Your expert was not only a tax expert, but a people expert!!! Her genuine and caring attitude came across in her response... T.G.W Matteson, IL
  • I WON!!! I just wanted you to know that your original answer gave me the courage and confidence to go into yesterday's audit ready to fight. Bonnie Chesnee, SC
  • Great service. Answered my complex tax question in detail and provided a lot of additional useful information for my specific situation. John Minneapolis, MN
  • Excellent information, very quick reply. The experts really take the time to address your questions, it is well worth the fee, for the peace of mind they can provide you with. Orville Hesperia, California
  • Wonderful service, prompt, efficient, and accurate. Couldn't have asked for more. I cannot thank you enough for your help. Mary C. Freshfield, Liverpool, UK
  • This expert is wonderful. They truly know what they are talking about, and they actually care about you. They really helped put my nerves at ease. Thank you so much!!!! Alex Los Angeles, CA
  • Thank you for all your help. It is nice to know that this service is here for people like myself, who need answers fast and are not sure who to consult. GP Hesperia, CA
 
 
 

Meet The Experts:

 
 
 
  • Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
< Last | Next >
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/KU/KUMI95/2013-9-30_195031_kumar.64x64.jpg Wallstreet Esq.'s Avatar

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    570
    10 years experience
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CU/Cuttinggirl/2011-10-29_03719_wcrop2.64x64.jpg Wendy Reed's Avatar

    Wendy Reed

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    3052
    15+ years tax preparation and tax advice.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/CATax/2009-08-04_204548_Mark.jpg Mark D's Avatar

    Mark D

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    985
    MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/IN/insearchoftheanswer/2013-8-16_0233_attorney.64x64.jpg Richard's Avatar

    Richard

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    3229
    29 years of experience as a tax, real estate, and business attorney.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/MY/MyVirtualCPA/2012-7-5_44024_cookmegan1.64x64.jpg Megan C's Avatar

    Megan C

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    6121
    Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/JG/jgordosea/2012-6-7_43138_GordosVeritas.64x64.jpg jgordosea's Avatar

    jgordosea

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    2783
    I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
  • http://ww2.justanswer.com/uploads/OZ/ozaukeecpa/2012-6-7_193219_Picture1croppedandshrunk.64x64.jpg MequonCPA's Avatar

    MequonCPA

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    2231
    CPA, Over 30 yrs experience w/individuals and small businesses. Masters in Tax.