10 Tips For U.S. Expats and Citizens with Foreign Income


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U.S. taxpayers who live in abroad and/or who income from foreign sources, most report and file income tax returns the same other taxpayer receiving income from U.S. sources.

Foreign Income

Foreign income may have many sources such as income from foreign real estate, working for a foreign company, investments in foreign stocks.


FATCA is for the reporting of financial assets held in foreign accounts over $50k for U.S. residents an $200K for U.S. expats if filing single.


FBAR is for the reporting of financial assets held in foreign accounts over $10K for both U.S. residents and for U.S. expats regardless of filing status.

Even as an Expat, you still need to file a tax return and, depending on your income, pay taxes, as long as you have a U.S. citizenship. Your worldwide income is taxable even if you filed a tax return and paid taxes in the country where you reside. If your taxable income is over $20,000 a year and you are married; or $10,000 and single; or made over $400 per year as self-employed or contractor, you  need to file a tax return.

There is a long list of tax filing requirements the IRS has determine for Expats: 

  • Automatic Extension until 6/15 but pay taxes on 4/15
  • Foreign Earned Income Exclusion (FEIE) of $104,100 only if return is filed
  • Spouses get another $104,100 of foreign earned income exclusion (FEIE)
  • If your income is over the FEIE amount, claim a house deduction
  • Credit for taxes paid in your country of residence
  • Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) reporting requirements
  • Foreign Bank Accounts Reporting (FBAR) requirements
  • Foreign companies ownership involves more IRS reporting
  • Foreign trust creation involves more IRS reporting
  • Self-employment income is subject to FICA (social security and medicare taxes)
  • The IRS is watching you
  • IRS special programs for Expats
  • Passive Foreign Investment Company (PFIC)

Check Our Video Presentation Tax Planning For U.S. Expats

Check Our Free Masterclass U.S. Expats Reporting Obligations For Holding a Foreign Bank Account - FBAR

US citizens are required to report foreign bank accounts. Learn how to avoid penalties from the IRS.

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