Internal Revenue Service (U.S. Taxes)

The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) has provided the following guidance for U.S. citizens abroad preparing for the 2016 tax filing season.  This IRS guidance is posted under Federal Benefits and Obligations on www.travel.state.gov.

U.S. citizens or resident aliens living or traveling outside of the United States are generally required to file income tax returns, estate tax returns, and gift tax returns and pay estimated tax in the same way as those residing in the United States. Your income, filing status, and age generally determine whether you must file a return. For more information on U.S. tax issues, please consult the IRS web site. You can find additional information for taxpayers residing overseas at the IRS’s International Taxpayer SiteThe American Citizen Services does not have state tax forms.

The U.S. Embassy does not provide any IRS services, nor do we have a taxpayer assistance specialist on staff.  Persons requiring taxpayer assistance or information should contact the Internal Revenue Service directly.

The closest Internal Revenue Service (IRS) is located in Puerto Rico:

Internal Revenue Service

Assistant Commissioner (International)
Mercantile Plaza Bldg. Room GF05
Ponce de Leon Avenue, Stop 27 ½
Hato Rey, Puerto Rico
Phone (787) 759-5100 / Fax (787) 759-4535

Office hours are 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. U.S. Eastern Standard Time, Monday through Friday, excluding U.S. holidays.

Important Information for U.S Taxpayers Living Abroad

The IRS Publication 54 (PDF 2.46 MB), Tax Guide for U.S. Citizen and Resident Aliens Abroad, and Federal Tax Information U.S. Taxpayers Living Abroad, provide overseas filers with international tax tips and the necessary information to prepare the tax return.

Non-Resident Aliens / Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN)

Several classes of non-resident aliens are required to obtain an Individual Taxpayer Identification Number (ITIN) in order to file U.S. taxes. To obtain an ITIN, you must file IRS Form W-7 with the Internal Revenue Service. You must submit a notarized true copy of your passport along with your W-7 to the IRS. The fee for this notarial service is $50.00 USD.

To download the W-7 form online, click here (PDF 92KB)

 Message from the Internal Revenue Service

The IRS is implementing significant changes made to the ITIN program under the PATH Act of 2015.  The new law means that any ITIN not used on a federal tax return at least once in the last three years will no longer be valid as of January 1, 2017 for use on a tax return unless the taxpayer renews the ITIN.  In addition, all ITINs issued prior to 2013 will begin to expire this year and taxpayers will need to renew them.

The first pre-2013 ITINs that will expire are those with middle digits of 78 and 79 (Example:  9XX-78-XXXX).  The renewal period for these ITINs began October 1, 2016.  The IRS began to mail letters to this group of taxpayers in August to inform them of the need to renew their ITINs in order to file a tax return, and explain the renewal steps.  The IRS will announce the schedule for expiration and renewal of ITINs that do not have middle digits of 78 and 79 at a future date.

If taxpayers have an expired ITIN, not renewed before filing a tax return next year, they might face a refund delay and be ineligible for certain tax credits, such as the Child Tax Credit and the American Opportunity Tax Credit, until they renew the ITIN.  More information is available on the ITIN page at IRS.gov.