If you have answered yes to our poll, you may be required to prepare a US Federal Tax Return with the IRS. US tax law states that a US Citizen must declare worldwide income no matter where he or she lives around the world.
EDA Professional Services is a Scottish based accountancy firm that can assist US Citizens with their filing requirements. We can also help even if you are not based in the UK.
Currently Scotland has different levels of taxation than the rest of the UK. This means that you can end up paying more tax in Scotland (the higher rate threshold did not increase in Scotland meaning that the 40% rate comes at a smaller level). As there is no tax treaty with the US and Scotland it may mean that you cannot claim any additional taxes you pay in Scotland as a Foreign Tax Credit on your US Return.
Depending on the level of taxes that may be due to the IRS, you may be required to prepare up to four years tax returns – even if there is no balance due.
If you are a US citizen living in the UK and would like to discuss this, please do not hesitate to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We look forward to hearing from you.
Please note that though this blog specifies the UK where Americans are living, it can also refer to other countries around the world. The United States has primary taxing rights over (more or less) every country.
Have you been living outside the UK for a number of years and continued to own property?
Before 2015 if you were not living in the UK you did not need to report any disposals of property. However, from the April 6th 2015 if you have property you report the sale of any property that you own to HMRC within 30 days of the sale. There are very tough penalties for non-compliance which are broadly in line with Self-assessment tax return penalties.
Details of this can be found at HMRC’s website by clicking this link.
If the property was your main home at one point when you were living in the UK, you can claim up to 18 months Principal Private Residence (PRR) Relief. This would take effect from 6 April 2015 until 6th October 2016. Any gain after that period may be subject to Capital Gains Tax in the UK.
HMRC also state that you can instead of using the acquisition cost of the property you can elect to use the Market Value of the property as of 5th April 2015 as the base cost of your property. The gain would be calculated based on the sale value less any costs and the April 2015 value. There may be reliefs available such as PPR.
If you have sold a property in the UK whilst living abroad, please do not hesitate to contact us at email@example.com and include “Sale of property when I was non-resident” in the subject heading. We would be happy to assist you.