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Christopher Phelps
Christopher Phelps, Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 2710
Experience:  CPA, CFP, PFS, Tax Practitioner 21 Years, Member AICPA/CSCPA Tax/Financial Planning Committee Member
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What are Taxes on Property Sold Overseas & Money Transferred to USA?

Resolved Question:

if i sell a property overseas, and transfer the money here to usa, what are the taxes i have to pay, what is the percentage of the whole amount, and in general , what are the taxes for any transaction from abroad? when do u pay those taxes, and how? i'm in the washington state if that makes a difference, thank you.
Submitted: 10 years ago.
Category: Tax
Expert:  Christopher Phelps replied 10 years ago.

Assuming you are a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, any gain you realized is taxable to you by the U.S.

Calculating Capital Gain

The difference between your net sales price and your cost basis (adjusted for improvements and depreciation) is your capital gain.

Your net sales price is the contract selling price less any selling costs (i.e. broker commissions and other transaction costs).

Your cost basis is determined by taking your original purchase price (plus any non-recurring closing costs) and adding the cost of any improvements made during ownership and then subtracting any allowable depreciation (whether claimed or not). If you inherited the property you would claim as your acquisition cost the value for the asset claimed in the decedents estate tax return. If no estate tax return was filed then you use the fair market value of the asset (supported by an appraisal if not readily determinable) as of the date of death.

If you own the property for more then one year, then the gain will be treated as a long-term gain and will be taxed up to a maximum capital gain rate of 15% (5% if the gain would otherwise be taxable in the 10% and 15% brackets). Otherwise the gain is treated as a short-term capital gain and to the extent not offset by other capital losses will be considered as ordinary income the same as wages and interest subject to whatever your marginal tax rate is. Don't forget state taxes.

Foreign Tax Credit

You may be able to take as a U.S. tax credit any income taxes you paid to a foreign country on gain realized on the sale. Any estate taxes paid to a foreign country attributable to the property may also be added to its cost basis.

Generally, only income taxes paid or accrued to a foreign country or a U.S. possession, or taxes paid or accrued to a foreign country or U.S. possession in lieu of an income tax, will qualify for the foreign tax credit. Qualified foreign taxes do not include taxes that are refundable to you or taxes paid to countries whose government is not recognized by the United States.

You can choose to take the amount of any qualified foreign taxes paid or accrued during the year as a foreign tax credit or as an itemized deduction. To choose the deduction, you must itemize deductions on Form 1040, Schedule A. To choose the foreign tax credit you generally must complete Form 1116 and attach it to your Form 1040 (

The amount of the foreign tax credit will be the smaller of the amount of foreign tax paid or accrued, or the amount of United States tax attributable to your foreign source income. This limit is computed separately for each type of foreign income.

If you cannot use the full amount of qualified foreign taxes paid or accrued, you may be allowed a 2-year carryback and then a 5-year carryover of the unused foreign tax.

You may not take either a credit or a deduction for taxes paid or accrued on income you exclude under the foreign earned income exclusion or the foreign housing exclusion.

With respect to the foreign tax credit you may want to chack out IRS Pub 514 at

Because it is impossible for me to identify and consider ALL the relevant facts, this advice is not intended or written to be used for the purpose of avoiding penalties, and cannot be used for that purpose.

Christopher Phelps and 3 other Tax Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 10 years ago.
what are the taxes on just a money transfer? no property involved...just a money transfer, from bank account to my bank account?
Expert:  Christopher Phelps replied 10 years ago.

There is no tax due solely because of the transfer of funds levied by the U.S. The tax is based on the gain realized and is paid pursuant to the U.S. tax code. There may be some sort of tax levied by the country the transfer originates out of. However, if the funds are ultimately sourced out of a gift or inheritance (i.e. you were either gifted or inherited the property) then you are required to complete a form if the transfer is in excess of $100,000.

If you are receiving a gift or inheritance from a foreign estate, you are required on receipt of such funds to file Form 3520, Annual Return to Report Transactions With Foreign Trusts and Receipt of Certain Foreign Gifts, ( if the gift(s) you receive during the year is in excess of $100,000. This is just an information return and no payment is due. You need to fill out the information portion at the beginning and then complete part IV. It is only an information return and no payment is due. You should keep records or any other documents you have that show the source of the funds as a gift or inheritance. It is due to be filed by the due date for your income tax return for the calendar year in which you received the gift. See the form instructions on where to file (

Because it is impossible for me to identify and consider ALL the relevant facts, this advice is not intended or written to be used for the purpose of avoiding penalties, and cannot be used for that purpose.