Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Tax Confusion Again

It's July and I didn't file a tax return or a tax statement declaring Foreign Earned Income (Form 2555). I was under the impression that I don't have to do any of this since I work for a public school. Sure I know that the IRS probably wants to know where I am and why I am not filing. But I recall before I left America filing a document telling my plans of moving.

However, though this tax thing is still haunting me. I was requested by my school to retrieve a Residency Certification document from my country. With some help I found the form 8802, filled it out to the best of knowledge and sent it in.

Well here we are today and I have received a notice stating they can't send me the document without proof that a.) I filed a tax return or b.) Reason for why I don't have to file a tax return.

I am thinking that I should show proof of option "b." considering I am under the impression that I don't have to file a tax return. But maybe I have to file the Foreign Earned Income document first.

Aghhh! I don't know.

Basically if I go with option b then I have show my pay stubs and write down the reason why I am not filing my tax return.


Update: Reading this maybe this free tax is really meant for getting out of paying Korean tax, not my home country's tax. And this certification is meant for that purpose. So it seems I am dealing with 2 seperate things here... and I now assume I have to file my tax return...somehow???


U.S. TAXES: Americans residing abroad are not exempt from filing requirements, but are, under certain conditions, entitled to exclusions on foreign-earned income. More information on overseas income and filing is available from the IRS publications "Tax Guide for U.S. Citizens Abroad" and "Overseas Filers of Form 1040." These and other Federal tax forms are available at the Embassy. source

Essentially: I have to do this all over again. Sigh

4 comments:

  1. If you indicate to the IRS that you had any type of income, they will require you to file a tax return.

    As a US citizen, you are obligated to file a tax return for all moneys earned, regardless of the location.

    Even though you won't pay taxes on that income (if you file a 2555 with your 1040) you still have to file a income tax return.

    I'd suggest you file your 1040/2555 and then ask for the form 6166, by filling out the form 8802. So that you aren't taxed in South Korea.


    Here is the information about the foreign earned income tax exclusion (form 2555)

    http://www.irs.gov/faqs/faq/0,,id=199670,00.html

    And the information about US residency certification form 8802 to get a certification form 6166

    http://www.irs.gov/businesses/small/international/article/0,,id=137809,00.html

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  2. Tax forms are so confusing-I think they do it on purpose! If I am not mistaken that form is for you to avoid having to pay Korean taxes for 2 (?) years. However you still have to file your taxes in the US (assuming that is where you are from from the form numbers!). You can easily file your taxes online -and probably won't have to pay taxes unless you made a considerable amount of money in Korea or worked in part in the US. Good luck!

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  3. Yep, you do have to file. Pretty much the only thing you get for being overseas is a 90 day deferral, but you still have to file.

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  4. You do have to file Joy. I made that error several years ago with a similar assumption, didn't file for 3 years and had to do it all at once. Wasn't a problem but it was a huge hassle trying to do it through the US Embassy, that was around the time we were applying for JH's green card and couldn't proceed till I had my tax return statements. In any case, FILE!

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