For immigrants arriving to the United States, the American tax system can be a very new and confusing concept. In fact, the U.S. tax system is so complex that most natural-born Americans have difficulty filing each year. As a general rule, U.S. tax law applies to you if you live in the United States or spend a significant amount of time here.
In the United States everyone with income above certain levels is expected to file a tax return. That’s not true in all countries around the world. In many countries, the government withholds taxes from paychecks, and the individual never has to directly file an income tax return. The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is the U.S. agency responsible for collecting taxes.
Whether you are a lawful permanent resident or an undocumented immigrant, it’s important that you get a basic understanding of your tax filing obligations.
This Thanksgiving as you debate President Trump’s most outrageous quotes at the dinner table, take a moment to thank an immigrant.
Immigration reform may have many Americans divided, but we should all agree on this – immigrants have given back to America in spades. Immigrant contributions to this country are endless. For over two hundred years, immigrants’ contributions have helped shape the United States into what it is today. Let’s give thanks. Continue reading →
The next wave of Trump administration policy designed to reduce immigration is here. U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has proposed major increases in the immigration fee structure. The USCIS immigration fee increase would nearly double the cost of some applications.
The Trump administration is simultaneously squeezing immigrants with a new public charge rule and changes to the fee waiver rules that make it more difficult for low-income immigrants and their families. To add insult to injury, some of the new fees would go to pay for Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE).
It is becoming increasingly important to have proof of your
immigration status in the United States. Having immigration papers,
documentation or proof of your legal status is essential if you have contact
with law enforcement or immigration officials. In the current environment, even natural-born U.S. citizens can run into problems with identification. What’s more, immigration paperwork can be necessary to gain access to many government benefits, secure housing, obtaining driving privileges, just to name a few. Continue reading →
“You can’t take it with you,” is an American saying that means money and worldly possessions are left behind when you pass on — they don’t follow you into death. Sadly, the same often applies to your credit history when you move to the United States.
For decades, newcomers to America have learned this the hard way. Arriving with virtually no American financial history, it can be next to impossible to get credit. No credit or poor credit can make it extremely difficult to get a:
The Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) allows you to obtain copies of the records and documents in your alien file (immigration file). As a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, you may also request the immigration records of other people (provided that person consents to the search).
You may obtain specific documents inside your records or even a complete copy of your entire immigration file. Continue reading →
The United States has long been a destination for economic opportunity. Immigrants have a significant history in American business as contributors and creators. They have labored in fields and factories, and immigrants have also built some of the largest U.S. businesses. There are many types of U.S. work visas and other statuses that may provide employment privileges in the United States. The rules for each can vary.
This is not a comprehensive list of all possibilities, but we’ve compiled a list of some of the more popular U.S. work visa types. Continue reading →
If you’ve already moved to the United States or if you are planning to move to the U.S., there are actions you can take to get your tax affairs in order. It’s important to plan your finances before you become liable for U.S. taxes or find the U.S. trying to tax your worldwide income.
If you’re planning to stay in the United States for an extended period, it’s best to know what your tax status would be and plan accordingly. If you are planning to immigrate, you should assess if you can afford the tax burden.
TN visa status allows Canadian or Mexican professionals within a certain set of occupations to work in the United States. It’s a nonimmigrant status that can be continually renewed. Because many TN professionals live and work in the United States for many years, they often end up meeting a future spouse in the United States. Once married to a U.S. citizen or permanent resident spouse, TN professionals may generally apply for permanent residence (green card). Although TN visa holders may adjust status to permanent resident, there are some special considerations that should be reviewed before applying. Continue reading →
Whether you are a temporary nonresident alien in the United States or you’re planning to move to the U.S. permanently, there are actions you can take to get your tax affairs in order. It’s important to know your tax resident status and what specific tax obligations some with your situation.
Planning your finances before you become liable for U.S. taxes or find the U.S. trying to tax your worldwide income can save you a significant amount of money. Taxes can be expensive and burdensome, but there are ways to minimize your tax liability the legal way.