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Hello, I am an Irish citizen and am married to a US citizen

Hello, I am an Irish...
Hello,

I am an Irish citizen and am married to a US citizen (through her father) who has never lived in the USA, until July of this year when we both moved. My wife is petitioning for a green card for me but we recently received a request for more information:

- She was asked to submit a copy of a completed federal tax return submitted to the IRS for 2011

- Submit all supporting tax documentation for 2011 (W-2s, 1099s, and all supporting tax schedules)

My question is this:

It says that in the letter we received, that if you are exempt then she should provide evidence. Is there any scenario in which she would have been exempt to submit the above forms?


If she is not exempt, what is the best way to proceed to become compliant?

Please note: my wife has never filed a tax return.
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Answered in 11 minutes by:
9/25/2012
Mark D
Mark D, Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
Satisfied Customers: 1,316
Experience: MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
Verified

Mark D :

Hello, as a US Citizen she is required to report worldwide income on a Form 1040NR when not a resident. There are many exclusion, treaties and credits available so that she may not owe any taxes to the US, but would still have a filing requirement to claim these items showing why she owes no taxes. Did she have income or did she not work or have investments?


 

Customer:

She had income as an Irish government employee. She has both US and Irish citizenship, but has never lived in the US before July of this year


 


 

Mark D :

Thank you for that information, roughly, how much does she make a year as an employee?


 

Customer:

So does that mean she does not need to file a Federal Income Tax return?


 

Customer:

She made in Ireland 38000 euros

Customer:

But since moving to the US in July, she makes $50000


 

Mark D :

That amount would fall under the foreign earned income exclusion amount. She would need to file Form 1040NR with attached Form 2555 to report the exclusion. If she ever went over $91K or so in earnings, she could also claim a foreign tax credit for any Irish taxes paid on the same income.


 

Mark D :

BotXXXXX XXXXXne, she had a filing requirement, but will owe no taxes once filed


 

Mark D :

Does this answer your question?>


 

Customer:

what timeframe does the 1040NR and 2555 cover ? she is 29 and until now, was never aware she had to file a tax form...


 

Customer:

and is the 1040NR considered a federal income tax return?

finally I presume she does not file W-2s, 1099s, etc

Mark D :

You should engage an EA or CPA to assist you with filing those missing returns, once filed she will be in compliance and the statute of limitations for audit will start.


 

Mark D :

1040NR is a federal income tax return yes


 

Customer:

What's an EA or CPA mean?

Mark D :

And she probably has a foreign equivalent


of a W2, but no W2 until she got a US employer

Mark D :

EA = Enrolled Agent (like me) CPA= Certified Public Accountant


 

Mark D :

those are licensed tax professionals


 

Customer:

Do you mind if I ask, the cost to through this process - as we never budgeted for this...?

Mark D :

Everyone is different, my best estimate would be around 200-300 per year filed.


 

Customer:

what age are you meant to file from?

Mark D :

no age limit really, it's a matter of when income met thresholds. You would need someone to sit down with you and figure out what years she needs to file


 

Customer:

I was doing research and are you familiar with this, i found on a website


 


:||A new IRS procedure will take effect on September 1, 2012. IR-2012-65. Once the rules kick in, you’ll be able to file delinquent tax returns for the past three years plus FBARs for the past six years. That’s less than the usual eight amended returns and eight FBARs for OVDP participants.

Mark D :

FBARS are not income tax returns, but are separate information returns about foreign accounts she has signatory authority over


 

Mark D :

she would need to fuile those as well to be fully compliant


 

Mark D :

teh amneded returns they are referring to is US taxpayers who previously omitted foreign income


 

Customer:

i understand the FBARS, but is it not talking about income tax also


 


here is the announcement from the IRS: http://www.irs.gov/Individuals/International-Taxpayers/New-Filing-Compliance-Procedures-for-Non-Resident-U.S.-Taxpayers

Mark D :

she has no need to amend since she never filed


 

Customer:

oh.....


 

Mark D :

I do see that, please note that is a proposed regulation


 

Customer:

so just so i know, the link i sent doesnt apply to her then?

Mark D :

It may, when and if it becomes regulation


 

Customer:


" This procedure will go into effect on Sept. 1, 2012"


 


Does that not mean its in effect?

Mark D :

But would help minimize the years you need to file


 

Mark D :

My apologies it did, for some reason I still think it's August


 

Mark D :

So 3 years income tax returns and 6 years FBARs it now seems


 

Mark D :

Please follow my above adice to properly file


 

Mark D :

*advice


 

Customer:

i appreciate i have taken your time, but do you mind explaining how the two interact to do 3 years income tax and 6 years FBARs?


 


Is it hte 1040NR or do i need additional forms?


 

Mark D :

You will most likely only need Forms 1040NR and 2555 for the income tax returns and Form TD F 90-22.1 for teh FBARs


 

Customer:

Ok great, VERY last question!


 


so the 1040NR and 2555 (and TDF 90-22.1) can cover 3 years or do you submit for each year?

Mark D :

each year is a separate return.


 

Customer:

OK Mark, really appreciate your help - so just to confirm i don't need other forms other than the 3 you stated there?


 


If I was to consult you on this would there be a way to contact you outside of this? My wife has a very simple tax history - one employer and one source of income for the last 3 years, so I can't imagine its that complicated for her?

Mark D :

We cannot engage outside of this forum unfortunately. Those forms should be it unless there was something else missed upon review of the actual documents.

Customer:

Ok that's fine. thanks very much again for your help..

Mark D
Mark D, Enrolled Agent
Category: Tax
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Experience: MBA, EA, Specializing in Business and Individual Tax Returns and Issues
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