Do you have to pay taxes in the United States? The answer is not that simple. It depends on the personal, professional and financial situation of each person. However, once you understand what requirements must be met to be a US taxpayer, it will certainly be easier to make the decisions necessary to avoid a problem if you have come to live in the United States.

How do you know if you have to pay taxes?

There are many situations in which you may be required to pay taxes; however, there are three that are the most common:

  1. Either parent or spouse has a US passport, you were assigned taxes during your last tax return, or your home is the United States and taxes are a personal matter.
  2. If you have to pay taxes, the law requires your presence. It is generally required at least once a year.
  3. When taxes are paid, it depends on the amounts you have to declare:

*If your annual gross income is less than 65,000 US dollars (USD), tax is generally not required; however, if you have property or goods transportation income that is greater than USD 65,000 per year, then you will be responsible for taxes on this amount.

What does it mean to be considered a tax resident in the United States?

Tax residents must report all of their income to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and pay taxes, regardless of the amount. If you are a tax resident, your taxes are calculated on the income you receive or spend in the United States; however, there may be some exceptions to this requirement:

  1. You will not be liable for taxes if the gross annual amount you receive in the United States is less than USD 85,000.
  2. You will not be liable for taxes on your expenses while you live outside the United States, for a period of no less than one year.

What taxes are paid in the United States?

Taxation depends on your personal situation: taxes can be on your income, income or wealth, gift tax, interest tax or asset tax.

Individuals who are US taxpayers must pay IRS taxes on all types of tax: income tax, income tax, and estate taxes.

If you are a permanent resident, how does your tax status work in the United States?

Once you have obtained your Green Card, you are qualified as a tax resident of the United States and you must file taxes; however, there are some exceptions that apply if you have a special personal situation:

  1. If you live outside the United States for the minimum tax period, most taxes do not apply while you live abroad.
  2. If you are a lawful permanent resident of the United States and have a home or business within the country, but the rest of your home or business is outside the United States, then taxes apply only to income generated within the United States.
  3. If you have a home or business in both locations, taxes are applied on income generated within the United States.
  4. If you are a US citizen, taxes apply no matter where you live or where you earn your income.

If you live outside the United States for the tax period, most taxes do not apply while you live abroad. However, if income generated within the US is taxable, those amounts must be included in the tax returns.

If you are the holder of a Non-Immigrant Visa, how does your tax status work in the United States?

Nonimmigrant Visa holders may or may not have to declare income and pay taxes to the United States Government, depending on the personal situation:

If you are a student H Visa holder, declare if income generated within the United States is taxed; However, there are exceptions that may apply, if you are a holder of a J Visa for worker, declare if income generated within the United States is taxed and if you are holder of an L Visa for temporary resident, they declare if income generated within the United States is taxed; however, there are exceptions that may apply: if you live outside the United States for the imposed period, taxes do not apply while you live abroad.

What are the consequences of not paying taxes?

Failure to file taxes is a criminal offense that could result in your deportation from the country; It could also impose fines and penalties, which would make it difficult to fix your immigration status in the United States, as well as taxes in the future with the administration of taxes and tax laws.

At Sleepless Attorney we have a team of lawyers specialized in tax matters, who will support and guide you through the United States tax code. We will make sure you are complying with all tax laws to avoid fines or potential complications.

You can schedule a free first appointment by calling (909)319-7103 / 1 (800) 559-7170, visiting us at our offices at 228 West C Street Ontario CA 91762 or clicking here.

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