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Lev
Lev, Tax Advisor
Category: Tax
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Experience:  Taxes, Immigration, Labor Relations
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I am a German citizen, married to a US Citizen, got my temp

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I am a German citizen, married to a US Citizen, got my temp Green card in May 2012, moved back to Europe (UK) want to stay here forever.

That being said, I am currently filling out the I-407 to abandon my permanent resident status (first, since I don't want to file US taxes for the rest of my life, and second, it is of no value anyways no more, since I left the US on June 30th 2012.)

My question is, what should I write under 6c Date of Abandonment?

My hope is to write Dec 31, 2012 (which would be 184 days after I left!!), since technically, I wouldn't have to file US taxes for 2013 anymore in that case, right? But the question is, can I still do that at this late point of time?

If not, which date do I have to put down?

I guess I should mention one more thing. I left the US on June 30 2012. However, I then went home to Germany for a while just in order to visit, and then moved to the UK on Sept 12, 2012.

So for tax purposes, that might make a difference as well, right? I was still conducting some business over the US while in Germany, and moved my business from the US to the UK on Sept 15, 2012.

Lev :

Hi and welcome to our site!

Lev :

On the Item 6c - you need to provide the date you actually abandoned status - it may be the date of your application or the earlier date - for instance the date of your last departure - June 30th 2012.
If you want to use a different date - you need to provide an explanation why that is the date the when actually abandoned status.
In general - you may use any date between your last departure and the date of filing the application - but there should be a specific reason.
If you simply state the reason as intention not to the US tax return - I doubt that will be accepted - and the date of your application will be used as the date of abandonment.
The IRS will use the official date of abandonment as a date when your status was changed from resident alien to nonresident alien.
You still may conduct business activities in the US while being abroad - that might be used as additional argument - but that fact along would not affect the determination of your residency status for tax purposes.

Customer:

Of course I will not say that "don't want to do a tax declaration for 2013" as a reason on the form. But you think If I said December 31st 2012, since that was the day, when I had left the US for 6 months, then they might accept that?

Lev :

There is no issue with the date itself - as long as that date is AFTER your last departure.
However - if you want not to use the your last departure - you need to provide some arguments - and there is a risk that if your arguments would not be accepted - the date of your application will be used as the date of abandonment.
The IRS will simply follow that determination.

Customer:

I don't want to use the date of my last departure. I want to use the 31st of December, which is 6 months after the last departure. Isn't i true, that if I leave the US without a rentrance permit, for longer then 6 months, with a temp green card, that that automatically invalids the green card? Shouldn't that way of argumenting have a good chance of success??

Lev :

As long as you have a green card status - you are considered as resident alien for income tax purposes.
From IRS prospective - there is NO automatic invalidation of your green card.
For immigration purposes - the situation might be different - that should be consulted with immigration attorney.

Customer:

Ok, got it. Final question then. Do you think I should try writing Dec 31st!?

Lev :

When you obtained so-called "temporary green card" - it doesn't provide you "temporary" status - your status is permanent - but is based on certain conditions.
From IRS prospective - there is NO difference if this is a conditional green card or unconditional.
I personally doubt that your " 6 months" argument will be accepted - as that has nothing to do with YOUR intention to abandon the permanent resident status.
The last day of departure as a abandonment date is generally accepted.

Customer:

Ok, but I probably can't really use the last day of departure for this, since I was still doing business at the time in the US until Sept 2012...

Lev :

Let consider an example - for instance the person was diagnosed with some illness on Dec 31 - and that fact changed his mind to abandon the status - such argument has a chance to be accepted.
Some other personal circumstances - death in the family, lost job, divorce, etc.

Lev :

You still may conduct business activities in the US while being abroad - that might be used as additional argument - but that fact along would not affect the determination of your residency status for tax purposes.

Lev :

As you were abroad - and assuming you are a resident of the US for tax purposes - you might be eligible to claim (1) a foreign earned income exclusion or /and (2) a foreign tax credit. So there is some tax relief possible - while filing tax returns might be required.

Customer:

So I guess my only option then is to put down the current date as abandonment date, right?

Lev :

The clear way is to use one of these dates - the date of your application or the date of your last departure - June 30th 2012.
All in between is possible - but require argumentation - and if you choose that route - I strongly suggest to consult with the immigration attorney.
The IRS will just follow that determination - and there is nothing you would be able to argue with the IRS.

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