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 jgordosea Your Own Question
jgordosea , Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3159
Experience:  I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
Type Your Tax Question Here...
jgordosea is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Hello, Im Russian working in US, Arizona on H1B visa and

Resolved Question:


I'm Russian working in US, Arizona on H1B visa and an US company pays me a salary. This company has offices in different countries. My wife is working in Belarus for this company in local subdivision. She is a Belarus citizen and now the company is going to relocate her to work with me in Arizona using L1 visa. Dhe will be kept at Belarus payroll and will get her salary in Belarus (to a debit card issued in Belarus). Before we start L1 process, there is some questions to address:
1) How will we file joint tax return in the USA and where her BY income should be considered as foreign income?
2) How to report taxes properly?

Andrei Shevtcov
(XXX) XXX-XXXX [email protected]
Submitted: 2 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  jgordosea replied 2 years ago.

Proper reporting will first be determined by your and your spouse's resident or nonresident status, each determined separately.

Both you and your spouse are subject to US income tax as nonresidents unless you have a green card or meet the substantial presence test and then you are taxed as a resident and have to report your worldwide income as subject to US income tax.

The substantial presence test is that you are present in the US for at least 31 days in the current year and at least 183 counting all of the days present in the current year, 1/3 of the days in the prior year and 1/6 of the day in the second prior year.
For more details see

As nonresidents, the only income subject to US income tax is:
1)Income that is Effectively Connected with a trade or business in the United States
2) U.S. source income that is Fixed, Determinable, Annual, or Periodical (FDAP)
For more details see

Salaries, wages or compensation of nonresident aliens is based on where the services are performed, regardless of where paid.
For details see
"All wages and any other compensation for services performed in the United States are considered to be from sources in the United States. The place where the personal services are performed determines the source of the personal service income, regardless of where the contract was made, the place of payment, or the residence of the payer."

If neither of you are residents due to substantial presence then you can file Form 1040-NR jointly and report only US source income.

If you are a resident due to substantial presence you will have to use Form 1040 and report your worldwide income.
Generally, you cannot file as married filing jointly if either spouse was a nonresident alien at any time during the tax year.
You can only file jointly if you and your spouse elect to have the nonresident spouse's worldwide income on that joint return.
For more details see

Please ask if you need more discussion or clarification.
Thank you.

jgordosea, Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 3159
Experience: I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
jgordosea and other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 2 years ago.

Thank you very much. I will pass this information to our employer and and if no other clarification required - I will rate this answer. Shouldn't take a lot of time (prob 2 business days). Thanks again

Expert:  jgordosea replied 2 years ago.
You are welcome.

Just let me know if you do need clarification.

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... seen a spike since October in legal questions from readers about layoffs, unemployment and severance.
Web sites like
...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
< Previous | 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.

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    10 years experience
< Last | Next >
  • Wallstreet Esq.'s Avatar

    Wallstreet Esq.

    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    10 years experience
  • Mark D's Avatar

    Mark D

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
  • Richard's Avatar


    Tax Attorney

    Satisfied Customers:

    29 years of experience as a tax, real estate, and business attorney.
  • Robin D.'s Avatar

    Robin D.

    Senior Tax Advisor 4

    Satisfied Customers:

    15years with H & R Block. Divisional leader, Instructor
  • Megan C's Avatar

    Megan C

    Certified Public Accountant (CPA)

    Satisfied Customers:

    Licensed CPA, CFE, CMA, CGMA who teaches accounting courses at Master's Level
  • jgordosea's Avatar


    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    I've prepared all types of taxes since 1987.
  • R. Klein, EA's Avatar

    R. Klein, EA

    Enrolled Agent

    Satisfied Customers:

    Over 20 Years experience